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. Harangue

    Honestly I don't see how the NRA can have this guy as their spokesman, he's just so paranoid about everything. Not a good way to show the people who are afraid gun owners are crazy by having this guy represent you.

    April 7, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  2. Derp

    Lanza WAS a law abiding citizen.....until he wasn't. If fact plenty of gun owning "law abiding" citizens decide to murder people on whims.

    April 7, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  3. Debbie

    I agree with Malloy. LaPierre and NRA are clowns. They hide behind face-paint. The NRA is out of touch. They turn a deaf ear to their own members. On tape over and over about gun registration. It's about money, lobby status...its not about rational gun safety. Thus Malloy is right, LaPierre is a clown.

    April 7, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  4. Jay

    LaPierre could rightly be called a clown, but he's not humorous. He's a monster with clown makeuo. If the guy were fighting for my rights - I am a gun owner and a hunter - I would simply describe him as stupid. But his real clients are the makers and sellers of guns, and he is extremely effective. He orchestrated a successful campaign against a U.N. treaty that would only his clients. He appears to have killed a totally reasonable background check movement with his moronic arguments against it. He's somehow persuaded Congress to line up against ideas supported by a huge majority of the American people and his own NRA. Yes, there is evil beneath this clown suit.

    April 7, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  5. lynn

    A man of shallow conviction and intellect.

    April 7, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain

    With apologies to toddlers everywhere (and I had three kids, so I know of what I speak), LaPierre is acting like a three-year-old.

    And the only appropriate response is to stop putting up with his nonsense and continue full speed ahead with what us adults know is right: Reasonable gun control to include background checks for ALL sales, a ban on military-style weapons and an elimination of high-capacity magazines.

    If LaPierre and the NRA don't like it, they can go suck their thumbs and stand in a corner.

    April 7, 2013 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  7. PaulG

    Yes blame guns and gun owners because you have no real answers to address our culture of violence. Blame the NRA for standing up for our rights that really are there for a reason.

    April 7, 2013 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  8. hypatia

    Amen and bravo for one politician who isn't intimidated by clowns.

    April 7, 2013 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  9. Rick in AZ

    There has not been a "gun control" law passed in the last 50 years that wasn't signed off on by the NRA. Therefore, there hasn't been a "gun control" law passed in the last 50 years that wasn't eviscerated, emasculated and rendered inert. The NRA because of their complete uncompromising intransegence have done more to put deadly weapons into the hands of criminals and the mentally ill than any other organization. Wayne LaPierre, Alex Jones and Ted Nugent are the poster children why the mentally ill should not possess firearms.

    April 7, 2013 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  10. Harbin

    Malloy is full of malarkey. Malloy has only made it more difficult for the law abiding citizens in that state. None of the "enlightened" changes will bother the criminal types and his state doesn't even enforce current gun laws, how are they going to be able to enforce new ones.

    April 7, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  11. Az

    The governor has armed guards, protection by gun, it is far more likely that the Governors supporters will pay the price of allwing only the criminal element to go armed. Governor Mallory will not stop gun aided crime, period.

    April 7, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  12. Martin

    No, Malloy and the idiots who passed these laws that will continue to have zero effect on the violence in their state are the clowns. Unfortunately every time there is a mass incident of violence, the first thing that happens is a knee jerk reaction against the implement of destruction, not the cause. People want something done, anything. You may as well pass a law that says in the light of this horrible tragedy, cars are going to be heavily regulated because if the shooter didn't have a car, he would have been forced to walk to the school allowing them time to escape. As a matter of fact, had he had to walk to the school, someone may have seen him carrying those weapons and been able to stop this before it even happened. Stupid logic is so easily absorbed by people still too emotional over the tragic loss of life to actually work out REAL solutions. You people in the East and the West coasts haven't a clue. You keep making more and more laws that are no more effective than dancing around a burning bush chanting to the gods.

    April 7, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  13. snomannn

    I agree with the gov. and what he has to say. I'm glad the people of Conn. have had the guts to stand up to the NRA.

    April 7, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  14. steve in SD

    The NRA is now taking over mental health issues too? What else do they do? Let me guess...support the cigarette industry?

    April 7, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  15. ollie

    Progressives Hate Freedom.

    April 7, 2013 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  16. Victo

    Lapierre represents millions of Americans who would rather not see their rights restricted due to feelings based emotional reactions that fail to address the actual nature of the issue.

    April 7, 2013 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  17. rofler

    Your new laws won't stop anything. Tragedy strikes where tragedy strikes. You should make murdering 20 kids illegal while you're at it, so that can't ever happen again.

    April 7, 2013 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  18. Tom

    The NRA's School Shield program is as unrealistic as LaPierre. It calls for teachers to act as armed security guards in schools and proposes to do this after a 26 – 30 hour training program. What the heck did I spend 40 hours training for a class D license, then another 30 hours for my "armed" class G.

    April 7, 2013 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  19. Victor

    Yet another attack on the NRA using insults and childish jibes, without providing data that actually substantiates their position

    April 7, 2013 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  20. Rod

    I just can't for the life of me figure out LaPierre's argument. We shouldn't have any laws because some people might not obey them? Obviously the people that choose not to obey the laws will be criminals by definition. So what's his point?

    April 7, 2013 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  21. trufaldino

    It's about time someone put LePierre in his place.

    April 7, 2013 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  22. Lars Masterson

    Anti-gun supporters will support anti-gun language, no matter how unintelligent and insulting it is.

    April 7, 2013 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  23. just bob

    Governor Malloy is absolutely correct. LaPierre, the Merchant of Death, is a clown in more ways than one can count.

    April 7, 2013 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  24. maxmanta

    Okay Malloy, you got your precious gun law. Now do something about the state budget, its failed economy, and its debilitating taxes and fees.

    Make no mistake. Whether or not you support the new gun laws, CT is a failed state and Malloy is a failure as a governor.

    April 7, 2013 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  25. Joe Brown

    Malloy is the one who is the clown! Linda have you every shot a shotgun? I guessing not, why don't you get on YouTube and watch women shooting a shotgun the a AR15 and see the difference. But you are just like these dimwitted governors making up these laws! Keep up the good work!

    April 7, 2013 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
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