Democratic Debate: Clinton Hits Sanders for Gun Control Voting Record

The candidates clashed over what they consider to be "common sense" gun control.

ByABC News
April 14, 2016, 11:02 PM

— -- In tonight’s Democratic debate in Brooklyn, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton clashed on the issue of gun control.

When asked if Clinton stood by statements that implied that lax gun control in Vermont has directly contributed to gun violence in New York, Clinton hit Sanders for siding with the gun lobby in Congress on what she called some of their biggest priorities.

Clinton slammed Sanders for the senator’s vote to give gun makers and sellers immunity from liability, calling it a vote for the National Rifle Association’s “most important priority.”

Sen. Sanders seems to have amended his position on that particular vote, as recently as January saying he would support a provision that would rescind the immunity provisions that he previously voted for.

But in the debate Sanders seemed to double down on the vote, saying, “If a gun shop owner sells a weapon legally to somebody and that person then goes out and kills somebody, I don’t believe it is appropriate that that gun shop owner who just sold a legal weapon to be accountable and be sued.”

This includes, Sanders said, the makers of the guns that were used in the 2012’s mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school. Sanders said the Sandy Hook victims’ families had every right to sue.

Rather than focus on holding gun manufacturers and dealers liable for what their weapons do, Sanders said, there should be increased efforts to keep guns from falling into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them.

Clinton then used one of Sanders’ most well-known positions against him: his desire to hold corporations accountable for their actions.

“We hear a lot from Sen. Sanders about the greed and recklessness of Wall Street, and I agree,” Clinton said. “What about the greed and recklessness of the gun manufacturers and dealers in America?”