Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is urging the Trump administration to ban assault weapons and take some “real action to stop gun violence.”
On Thursday morning, Sanders took to Twitter and said that the United States should emulate the recent actions of New Zealand, where this week’s mosque shootings in which 50 people lost their lives have prompted the government to toughen already strict gun laws in the country.
“This is what real action to stop gun violence looks like. We must follow New Zealand’s lead, take on the NRA and ban the sale and distribution of assault weapons in the United States,” tweeted Sanders.
Bernie Sanders cites a Washington Post article that details the “action” in New Zealand, where New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Thursday that her government was banning semiautomatic weapons six days after shootings in two Christchurch mosques that killed 50 people. Police stated that the attacker was prepared for another attack.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern stated that she plans to buyback weapons that are already in circulation and prosecute anybody who doesn’t comply with the ban.
“On 15 March, our history changed forever. Now, our laws will, too,” Ardern said, according to the Post. “We are announcing action today on behalf of all New Zealanders to strengthen our gun laws and make our country a safer place.”
Bernie Sanders comes from a rural state where gun ownership is high and hunting is very popular. Eventhough he was reluctant to promote wide gun control as a senator, the senator supported an assault weapons ban back in 1994.
Sanders’ position hardened in February 2018 after the wake of the Parkland shootings, when a student killed 17 of his peers. Sanders was a popular speaker at Parkland rallies that advocated increased gun control in the United States.