Tenn. Congressman's Shooting Response: 'We're Not Gonna Fix It'

GOP Rep. Tim Burchett says tougher gun laws won't accomplish anything
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 28, 2023 12:42 PM CDT
Tennessee Congressman on Shooting: Laws Will Not 'Fix It'
An an entry to Covenant School has become a memorial for shooting victims, Tuesday, March 28, 2023, in Nashville, Tenn.   (AP Photo/John Amis)

Monday's school shooting in Nashville has put the focus back on gun safety in Congress, and the Hill reports that Democrats aim to force votes on as-yet unspecified reforms. Democratic Rep. Abigail Spanberger of Virginia is pushing for what's known as a "discharge petition" that would force such votes with a simple House majority. However, given that Republicans have a slim House edge, Democrats would need at least five GOP lawmakers to join them, and the Hill suggests even that number might be unattainable. Related coverage:

  • GOP Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee lamented the loss of six lives in his home state but suggested tougher laws would not change anything. "It’s a horrible, horrible situation," Burchett told reporters of Monday's shooting at the Covenant School, per the Hill. "And we’re not gonna fix it. Criminals are gonna be criminals." He added: "My daddy fought in the Second World War, fought in the Pacific, fought the Japanese, and he told me… ‘Buddy, if somebody wants to take you out and doesn’t mind losing their life, there’s not a whole heck of a lot you can do about it.'" Congress, he said, would only "mess things up."

  • The GOP congressman in whose district the shooting took place said he was "heartbroken" over the shooting, though critics called attention to the Christmas card Rep. Andy Ogles sent out last year featuring him and his family holding assault-style weapons. Asked if he regretted the image, he said, “Why would I regret a photograph with my family exercising my rights to bear arms?” per NBC News. Asked about potential congressional action, he said: "We don't want to jump to any conclusions. There’s still a lot more information about this case that hasn’t been let out to the public."
  • Police in Nashville released bodycam footage of officers in the school. WKRN has a link, but note that the footage might be disturbing to some viewers.
(More Nashville school shooting stories.)

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