WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — Reiterating that she is still “disappointed” by Congress’ inability to pass gun control legislation last year, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the U.S. can’t let the “minority” of gun rights supporters “terrorize” the majority of Americans.
Speaking with CNN during a Tuesday town hall meeting, the potential 2016 presidential candidate reinforced her support for gun control measures, noting that “the horrors” of the December 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting should have swayed Congress into passing universal background checks for gun owners.
“I believe that we need a more thoughtful conversation. We cannot let a minority of people — and that’s what it is, it is a minority of people — hold a viewpoint that terrorizes the majority of people,” said Clinton. “You are about the fifth person in the past few weeks — parents, another teacher, interested citizens — who have said something similar to me.”
“I was disappointed that the Congress did not pass universal background checks after the horrors of the shootings at Sandy Hook,” Clinton said in response to a question from a school teacher in the audience.
“I don’t think any parent, or any person should have to fear about their child going to school or going to college because someone for whatever reason, psychological, emotional, political, ideological, whatever, could possibly enter that school property with an automatic weapon and murder innocent children, students, teachers.”
Clinton added that she would support a ban on assault weapons as part of a nationwide push for more comprehensive gun control legislation.
“Yes, we need to thrash this out in the political realm,” she said. “But the vast majority of Americans, even law-abiding gun owners, want background checks that work. Information that is shared immediately, and an awareness that we’re going to have to do a better job protecting the vast majority of our citizens, including our children, from that very, very, very small group.”
“I will speak out [on this subject] no matter what role I find myself in,” Clinton pledged, referencing her potential presidential bid in 2016.
Clinton also discussed the recent apprehension of Ahmed Abu Khatallah, saying she hoped questioning would uncover more about the 2012 attack on an American consulate in Benghazi that left four Americans dead while she was U.S. Secretary of State.
“There are answers, not all of them, not enough,” said Clinton. “Frankly I’m still looking for answers because it was a confusing and difficult time.”