April 7th, 2013
10:16 AM ET
10 years ago

Malloy: NRA’s LaPierre acts like a circus clown

(CNN) - Responding to criticism from the National Rifle Association over Connecticut's new gun laws, Gov. Dan Malloy argued the pro-gun group's executive vice president, Wayne LaPierre, is simply blowing smoke.

"Wayne reminds me of the clowns at the circus - they get the most attention. That's what he's paid to do," Malloy said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."

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The Democratic governor on Thursday signed into law some of the nation's strictest gun regulations, following the state's devastating school shooting in December in Newtown, which left 20 children and six adults dead.

The new Connecticut laws include the addition of more than 100 weapons to the state’s list of banned assault weapons - including the semiautomatic Bushmaster rifle, one of the firearms used in the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. The law also bans the sale of magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition, as well as armor-piercing bullets. Buyers will need a certificate to buy ammunition.

It also requires background checks for all gun purchases.

LaPierre said this week that the only people who will follow the new regulations are law-abiding gun owners, not criminals.

"I think the problem with what Connecticut did is the criminals, the drug dealers, the people that are going to do horror and terror, they aren't going to cooperate," LaPierre said on Fox News. "I mean, all you're doing is making the lawbooks bigger for the law-abiding people."

Asked who will be most affected by the new laws, Malloy said they'll be "probably a little tougher on everybody."

"This guy is so out of whack, it's unbelievable," Malloy told CNN's chief political correspondent, Candy Crowley, referring to LaPierre.

Connecticut became the third state to pass tough measures since the December rampage in Newtown. New York and Colorado passed gun control legislation limiting magazine capacity, among other provisions.

Malloy pointed to the fact that the overwhelming majority of Americans favor the idea of more background checks, a proposal found in legislation currently sitting before the U.S. Senate. The NRA, however, opposes that bill.

"I can't get on a plane, as the governor of the state of Connecticut, without somebody running a background check on me. Why should you be able to buy a gun? Or buy armor-piercing munitions? It doesn't make any sense. He doesn't make any sense," he said.

Another controversial measure in the Connecticut law is the requirement to register pre-existing magazines that hold more rounds than the new limit. Malloy said the registry was needed so that there are no new high-capacity magazines in Connecticut, and so law enforcement can tell the difference between the ones that already existed in the state and the new ones.

“If you bring a magazine that you purchased in another state into our state, it's illegal. Period,” he said.

The NRA last week released detailed recommendations for its proposal to train and arm adults to keep watch in schools as a way to protect kids from shooters. It also had proposals for mental health programs.

Asked if there was anything in the NRA plan that he agreed with, Malloy said "precious little," adding that schools need tougher protection barriers from intruders - but not necessarily armed guards.

"What this is about is the ability of the gun industry to sell as many guns to as many people as possible - even if they're deranged, mentally ill, a criminal background, they don't care. They want to sell guns," Malloy argued.

Watch State of the Union with Candy Crowley Sundays at 9am ET. For the latest from State of the Union click here.

soundoff (349 Responses)
  1. jhb

    If I were a criminal I would be heading for Conn right about now. No one will be able to defend themselves.

    April 7, 2013 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  2. georg004

    As usual, Gov Malloy (and many posters on this site) resort to name-calling, rather than dealing with the substance of Mr. LaPierre's argument. Sigh.

    April 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  3. JohnGoody

    As far I can tell, nobody is taking any guns from anybody. If you are law abiding, you register your gun if it is on the banned list and you register your high capacity magazine. What is the BFD? As for the manufacturers, why would they move out of CT, based on these new restrictions? That makes no sense. There are plenty of other places to sell these guns, like the military. Less high capacity assault weapons available will lessen the chance of mass shootings. That makes sense.

    April 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  4. Mlliington Man

    The fact of the matter is that all of this back and forth is useless. I, a proponent of gun rights, will not change an anti-guns views just as much as they will not change mine. Too bad we can not respect each other as citizens and result to name calling. The fact of the matter is I am a NRA member. Wayne represents my beliefs as well as the gun manufacturers. The fact of the matter is these new and old laws will do nothing to stop gun violence. You can make your laws to make you feel safe. Let me keep my gun to make me feel safe.

    April 7, 2013 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  5. HomeBoy

    The Governor is the clown. His gun control laws would not have prevented Newtown. This is about mental illness.

    April 7, 2013 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  6. HomeBoy

    Illinois and in particular Chicago, have the toughest gun laws out there. Yet the murder rate is sky high there. Hmmm. Seems counter-intuitive doesn't it?

    April 7, 2013 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  7. Spgfld Tom

    When in doubt demonize and name call. Class act Gov. Mallory! Typical of hate mongering we see from the President on down. BTW: Gun manufacturers in CT contribute 1.7 billion dollars to the econmy of the state. What happens when they pack their tents and leave? Truly, is there 1 word in these laws that will prevent a madman from another massacre in a "gun free zone"?

    April 7, 2013 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  8. AgrippaMT

    Thank you for saying that Governor. It's absolutely true. The entire NRA is a circus of horrors.

    April 7, 2013 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  9. Tom

    Perhaps it's Malloy that's the real Bozo! When only the police have guns, we will have a police state. Malloy is just another big government bureaucrat that thinks we can tax, regulate, and spend our way to security and prosperity. WRONG!

    April 7, 2013 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  10. Juxtapoz

    I agree With the NRA. In fact, let's also get rid of all these big govern,ent IMMIGRATION laws, too. The only people they're stopping are law-abiding immigrants, not illegal aliens, and making it harder for decemt people. Hey, how 'bout we also ditch all those new VOTING laws the GOP created, since all they've done is make it harder for law-abidng citizens to vote, not stop determined criminals from cheating the system. And why the heck to we need laws about speeding, either? Speed laws trample my freedoms, and prevent good, law-abiding people from getting places ontime, while the law-breakers drive as fast as they want no matter what the sign says.

    And what aout the DRUG laws? Only addicts abuse drugs. The rest of us shouldn't have our liberty restricted just because addicts can't control themselves. And while I'm on the subject of control, why not get rid of all ABORTION laws too? They do nothing but stop women who need abortions to avoid going bankrupt, or being forced to raise the child of a rapist. Let women make our OWN decisions, not government! and what about G A Y marriage? Let's let consenting adults do what they want to do. C'mon conservatives, I KNOW you just can't wait to do all this, sothat we cam all be FREE, right? RIGHT?

    C'mon conservatives

    April 7, 2013 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  11. Juxtapoz

    Illinois and in particular Chicago, have the toughest gun laws out there. Yet the murder rate is sky high there. Hmmm. Seems counter-intuitive doesn't it?"

    You righties LOVED new laws when the subject was the vast epidemic of voter fraud that didn't exist. Oh right, this gun thing is something YOU like, so it's different.

    April 7, 2013 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  12. Carlos

    I would like to see how many criminals are going to register their magazines with the state. Wait a minute, I already know the answer. ZERO! Criminals do not obey the laws on the books now. What makes these liberal socialist minded politicians and the people posting who say they agree with these new laws think that criminals are going to obey these new laws that New York, Colorado, Maryland and Connecticut have passed? All these new laws are doing is further restricting the rights of law abiding citizens. The ultimate goal of these politicians is the complete restriction of a citizen's right to own ANY firearms! I wish they would stop lieing about their ultimate goal and be honest about their agenda.

    April 7, 2013 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. dapper1

    Universal background checks are one thing that all of us should be able to agree on. Yet I've heard arguments from Wayne LaPierre and Larry Pratt that any background check will not keep a criminal from getting a gun so they are against any background check. If you are a gun dealer or a private seller, why wouldn't you want to know if the guy you are selling to is a criminal or a mental case? The argument that we can't have a background check really boils down to making the good the enemy of the perfect. We need to stop making it easy for them to get weapons. I agree that the more determined criminal will still get a gun but it will deter some of the lazier, dumb ones and they are the majority.

    April 7, 2013 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  14. john

    LaPierre said this week "the only people who will follow the new regulations are law-abiding gun owners, not criminals."

    Like Mrs. Lanza, correct?

    April 7, 2013 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  15. wade

    The GOV is an lunatic trying to make sure only criminals have guns. The next Chicago.

    April 7, 2013 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  16. Gunowning lib

    All of these new law are in response to Newtown and yet none of these new laws would have saved these children. When will the real debate begin and these clowns on both sides step aside?

    April 7, 2013 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  17. smitty

    Those new gun laws in Conn. are a total farce. These people think that banning guns will solve their problem(s). The only thing that will solve these problems is going back to REAL PARENTING in the home and allowing teachers to return to being able to punish students who misbehave. THAT used THE PROBLEM of roudy, misbehaving kids. That used to instll VALUES. Children would grow up to be respectable adults and not the whinning, spoiled individuals of today. During my years of growing up if you were disciplined at school your parents were waiting when you got home and you caught more of the same. The kids learned what RESPECT was and showed it at school and at home. Today it's " I'LL SUE!" from parents who should should take steps to correct that child. That's one of this country's biggest problems. But no...it's "Leave No Child Behind'....give that child that hasn't done a thing in class an 'A' instead of that 'F' they earned. No wonder our country has fallen from being No. 1 in Math, Physics, etc. to far down the ladder! Sad!!

    April 7, 2013 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  18. James Klimaski

    Do background checks work. The answer is yes. Tens of thousands are denied their purchases after the simple background checks was completed. LaPierre knows this, but he doesn't want his gun nut supporters to know. And as for "Homeboy," the murder rate in Chicago has gone down so much you have to check the stats from the 60's to find a lower rate. His information, probably gotten from LaPierre, is woefully out of date.

    April 7, 2013 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  19. smitty

    Minor correct above...'THAT solves THE PROBLEM of roudy, misbehaving kids'.

    April 7, 2013 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  20. William Miller

    Malloy is exactly right. The gun industry has one purpose, and it's not to protect the 2nd Amendment. It's to sell a product that, like any other potentially dangerous product, needs to be sensibly regulated. To suggest that guns shouldn't be regulated benefits only the gun industry, not the American public. The paranoid far right, which is largely comprised of people who used to consider themselves strongly pro-law and order (under Nixon, Reagan and Bush), now appears to believe that government (of which law enforcement officers are obviously a part) is now out to get us all, starting with our guns. So now the question to these people becomes, are you pro-government law enforcement, or are do you now view cops, federal marshals and soldiers alike as potential enemies? And if you view them as agents of a potentially dangerous government, how exactly are you not dabbling in treason against your government?

    April 7, 2013 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  21. AG

    Thank you Governor Malloy for your hard work to pass the new gun laws in Connecticut. It is the best way to honor the victim of Newtown. And it is high time that the attacks of the NRA receive the response they deserve – clowns indeed.

    April 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  22. TomGI

    Governor Dan is "the man"

    April 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  23. Just plaincrazy

    unbelieveable!!!!!!!!! Passing all these gun laws are not going to do any good. When robberies, break-ins,murders start going up, everyone can thank the anti gun nut's, bloomberg and the rest of the real bozo's in the world. Your governor is but a puppet controlled by bloomberg, PERIOD. The governor is a coward, being controlled by mr naney bloomberg witch is a claas a MORON. And just like someone said earlier 85% said NO TO THE NEW LAWS. And all the firearms companies can move here to northern Michigan. That's one more state i will not visit.

    April 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  24. Proteus

    "What this is about is the ability of the gun industry to sell as many guns to as many people as possible – even if they're deranged, mentally ill..."

    Well no kidding Gov.! Of corse they want to sell guns, it's their industry! Why not enact a few laws to prevent the mentally ill from purchasing firearms? He makes it sound like they are selling to anyone, whether illegal or not, and that just doesn't make sense. You can't stay in business like that.

    Anyone else getting sick of both sides making lame arguments such as this? The entire debate (both pro gun control and pro 2nd amendment) has been a circus!

    April 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  25. Penny Wright

    That is an insult to clowns.

    April 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
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