Almost nine months after he first asked White House officials for access to federal terrorist watch lists to prevent suspects from purchasing firearms in Connecticut, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy seems to have lost hope.
Malloy told reporters Tuesday that he thinks the federal government is “looking for precedent to allow us to do it, they have as of yet not found it.”
At this point, it appears unlikely that the White House will approve Connecticut’s request.
“I think that the question is as the legislation was drafted allowing for the existence of such a list, was it intended to limit the terrorists from buying guns? Not because anyone was advocating that terrorist be allowed to buy guns, but because it wasn’t envisioned as a question at that point,” Malloy said.
Malloy first proposed the measure in December 2015, after the U.S. Senate failed to pass a similar measure to block firearm sales to suspected terrorists.
U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy again voiced their own support for “no fly, no buy” legislation after the mass shooting at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub in June. Murphy led a 15-hour-long filibuster in the Senate last month to force a failed vote on a “no fly, no buy” measure, and Democrats in the House of Representatives staged a 25-hour sit-in for a similar vote.
Malloy, who was in Orlando for the Democratic National Convention Platform Committee meeting, said visiting the Pulse nightclub was moving and difficult.
“The site of a tragedy like that becomes a location that people feel the need to visit to remember their loved ones. The 49 deaths that we saw at that location, plus 53 other injuries, I wanted to mark the occasion,” Malloy said.
He also remarked on the recent sniper shooting of police officers in Dallas, as well as the deaths of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, which galvanized the Black Lives Matter movement last week. Malloy called for a national ban on assault weapon sales, and called the killing “a terrible thing.”
He also questioned why over 20 marchers in Dallas went “to an anti-violence demonstration carrying long guns with them.” He asserted that these weapons are used for hunting and target practice, but “have no use in an urban environment.” Texas is an open-carry state.