Pete Buttigieg on Gun Control

Democratic Presidential Challenger; IN Mayor


Much work to enact measures that vast majority supports

Q: Why wouldn't you support mandatory buybacks of assault weapons?

BUTTIGIEG: I think we have got a lot of work to do right now on the basics, universal background checks, red flag laws, a ban on new sales of these assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, things that the majority, in many cases, the vast majority, of Americans support, that still haven't got done. I think we have got some fundamentals we have got to take care of. And

Source: CNN State of the Union interview for 2019 Democratic primary , Aug 18, 2019

What we're doing on gun violence isn't working

What we're doing hasn't worked because we haven't had a system in Washington capable of delivering what the American people want. 80, 90% of Republicans want universal background checks, not to mention common sense solutions like red flag laws that disarmed domestic abusers and flag mental health risks, and an end to assault weapons, things like what I carried overseas in uniform, that have no business in American neighbors in peace time, let alone anywhere near a school.

This is the exact same conversation we've been having since I was in high school. I was a junior when the Columbine shooting happened. I was part of the first generation that saw routine school shootings. We have now produced the second school shooting generation in this country. We better not allow there to be a third. We all know the right thing to do. They won't prevent every incident. They won't save every life. But we know what to do, and it has not happened.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit) , Jul 30, 2019

Voluntary buyback, plus ban assault weapons

Pete Buttigieg on Assault Weapons: Support a voluntary buyback program.

FIVE CANDIDATES HAVE SIMILAR VIEWS: Steve Bullock; Julian Castro; Beto O`Rourke; Tim Ryan; Andrew Yang.

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg calls for a ban on "military-style assault weapons," and a campaign spokesperson told POLITICO that Buttigieg "supports a new federal ban on assault-style weapons, as well as a voluntary buyback program for existing assault-style weapons."

Source: Politico "2020Dems on the Issues" , Jul 17, 2019

Trained on military weapons: no place in civilian use

Q: You are the only person on this stage with military experience. Does that inform your thinking on gun control, or on assault weapons?

Mayor Pete BUTTIGIEG: We trained on some of these kinds of weapons. If more guns made us safer, we would be the safest country on earth. It doesn't work that way. Common-sense measures like universal background checks can't seem to get delivered by Washington, even when most Republicans, let alone most Americans, agree it's the right thing to do. As somebody who trained on weapons of war, I can tell you that there are weapons that have absolutely no place in American cities or neighborhoods in peacetime, ever.

V.P. Joe BIDEN: I'm the only person that has beaten the NRA nationally. I'm the guy that got the Brady Bill passed, the background checks. I'm also the only guy that got assault weapons banned, and the number of clips in a gun banned. Our enemy is the gun manufacturers, not the NRA, the gun manufacturers.

Source: June Democratic Primary debate (second night in Miami) , Jun 27, 2019

Respect people's desire for self-defense

Democrats have largely converged on a moderate, consensus view of gun control; we wanted to get at a deeper question of values--so we asked "In an ideal world, would anyone own handguns?" Some answers:
Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com) , Jun 18, 2019

Common sense gun control can work under Second Amendment

Q: Do you think the Second Amendment prevents gun control?

A: We've already decided within the framework of the Second Amendment that we're going to draw a line somewhere, right? "Shall not be infringed" clearly doesn't mean that you're entitled to a nuclear weapon. There are common sense limits that a thinking society can live by, while making sure that we honor the lifestyle of sporting and the idea that people should be equipped to defend themselves if they need to.

Source: Meet the Press 2019 interview of 2020 presidential hopefuls , Apr 7, 2019

Yes to gun control and universal background checks

As the mayor of South Bend, Buttigieg is a member of˙Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a group that advocates for gun control legislation at the state and federal level. He also supports universal background checks, and opposed allowing guns in schools and so-called "Stand Your Ground" self-defense gun laws.
Source: PBS Newshour on 2020 Democratic primary , Feb 15, 2019

Installed ShotSpotter technology: identify source of gunfire

Over time, I've learned a number of rules that have helped us to make sure that the use of data makes sense, and does good.

First, know the difference between reporting an issue and resolving it. In some cases, the two go so closely together that you can lose track of the distinction. For example, when we installed ShotSpotter technology using microphones to acoustically pinpoint gunshots, we were enhancing our ability to deal with gun violence. An officer could be immediately dispatched to the scene of a shooting, be it an outdoor fight or a domestic violence case, whether someone called it in or not. And this, in turn would help in the long run to deter gun violence.

But in other cases, knowing more doesn't help. At a tech conference, I saw a pitch from a startup that would automatically detect patterns of opioid use by scanning for trace amounts in the sewage. Financing a project to tell us more about the problem could come at the expense of treatment options

Source: Shortest Way Home, by Pete Buttigieg, p.189 , Feb 12, 2019

Other candidates on Gun Control: Pete Buttigieg on other issues:
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Page last updated: Sep 01, 2021