Emotions were high at Wednesday's (Feb. 21) town hall where survivors of Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland addressed Florida lawmakers and the National Rifle Association about gun control.
Sen. Marco Rubio's new openness to tighter restrictions on firearms left gun-control advocates clamoring Thursday for a tougher stand from the Florida Republican, as he took to Twitter to reflect on his emotionally charged exchanges with survivors of last week's deadly high school shooting and the parents of the victims.
Guttenberg asked Rubio to look him in the eye, to acknowledge the role guns played in his daughter's death and then promise that he would do something.
He said if he believed an assault weapons ban "would have prevented this from happening, I would have supported it".
The Democratic congressman continued to express his support to ban semiautomatic rifles, referring to them as "weapons of war".
"I want you to know that we will support your children in a way that you will not", she told Loesch, before asking her whether the NRA believes it should be more hard for people to obtain semiautomatic weapons.
"The notion that my kids are going to school with teachers that are armed with a weapon is not something I'm comfortable with", he said. He also said he disagrees with those who support arming teachers.
"I think if changes are going to be made, these kids are going to do it".
Mr Rubio responded: "Here's what I said: The problems that we're facing here today can not be solved by gun laws alone".
Following the town hall, Sen.
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel challenged Loesch to take action limiting weapons.
This interaction between Senator Rubio (who, by the way, deserves no extra credit in my book for showing up to talk to his constituents, a.k.a. his job) and Cameron Kasky brought me to my feet alone in my living room.
Still, Rubio's public announcement that he will support gun reform measures is a far cry from his comments just a few days ago.
"The answer to the question is that people buy into my agenda", he said. "When I'm pissed at you, you know it", Fred Guttenberg said. "So we'll have to get into that debate, but that is something I believe that we can reach a compromise (on) in this country, and that I'm willing to reconsider".
"So right now, in the name of 17 people, you can not ask the NRA to keep their money out of your campaign?" asked student Cameron Kasky.
"People buy into my agenda", Rubio said, reciting an oft-used talking point.
"I'm a native Floridian, I grew up on a ranch, I've always had guns", Nelson said.
Samantha Grady, a student who was shot twice in the assault, said "My best friend was killed right in front of me. None of us support people who are insane, who are risky to themselves, who are a danger to others, getting their hands on a firearm", she said. California legislators are already using the Florida shooting as a justification to expand the bill to add employers, co-workers, high school and college staff, and mental health workers to the list of individuals who can seek a restraining order.