Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used the occasion of the Christian school shooting in Nashville to call for a renewal of the so-called assault weapons ban that her husband then-President Bill Clinton signed into law in the 1990s.
Clinton tweeted Tuesday, “We had an assault weapons ban from 1994-2004 that prohibited the manufacture or sale for civilian use of certain semi-automatic weapons and banned magazines with 10 rounds or more.”
“Mass shootings dropped during that decade. We did it once and should do it again,” she added.
Conservative commentator Jack Posobiec responded, “Did that stop Columbine?”
Did that stop Columbine? https://t.co/3lPcO7rLxT
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) March 28, 2023
The 1999 mass shooting at Columbine High School outside of Denver left 13 dead and 24 injured. It was one of the worst in U.S. history.
The assailants used a combination of shotguns, handguns, and semi-automatic weapons.
At a Senate hearing on Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas could not even provide a definition of what an “assault weapon” is. He offered the example of the AK-47, which can be fired in fully-automatic mode.
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He finally pointed to the 1994 ban, saying there is no doubt a definition of assault weapon in it.
Alejandro Mayorkas says he agrees with the Joe Biden about banning assault weapons, but can’t define what is an “assault weapon”
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) March 28, 2023
The legislation made illegal the manufacture, sale and possession of specifically listed makes and models of “military-style semiautomatic firearms” and outlawed most large capacity magazines holding more than 10 rounds, according to the Justice Department.
The DOJ did note these types of weapons were rarely used in gun crimes both before the ban and after.
Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro tweeted a chart in 2017 showing that the murder rate had been trending down for decades in the U.S., despite gun ownership increasing significantly.
Notably, the rate remained low and then decreased further after the assault weapons ban expired in 2004.
Here is a chart of American gun ownership and American murder rate. Please explain how more guns inevitably means more murder. pic.twitter.com/TVOJZe2BTi
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) October 3, 2017
In the case of the Nashville shooting at The Covenant School on Monday, the assailant used two semi-automatic rifles and one 9 mm handgun.
Hale fired a number of rounds inside the Covenant Church/School building. She was armed with these 3 guns and significant ammunition. pic.twitter.com/3LYOU2r0sh
— Metro Nashville PD (@MNPDNashville) March 28, 2023
The rifles clearly had higher capacity magazines than the 1994 ban would have allowed, but the death toll of six people at the school means the number of rounds available to the shooter probably wasn’t a factor.
Nashville seems to be another instance in which leftists, like Clinton, made the obligatory knee-jerk call for an “assault weapons” ban, but it likely would have had no impact on how the incident transpired.
As was the case with Columbine, someone with a heart set on murder can do so with the weapons available.