Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers debate gun control measures

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The ongoing debate over gun control is expected to dominate this week’s Sunday show circuit, with lawmakers from both parties set to appear on the networks as Congress attempts to reach a deal on gun reform.

High-profile shootings at a supermarket in Buffalo, N.Y., an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas and a hospital in Tulsa, Okla., have reignited discussions about how to prevent future gun violence. The gunman at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde killed 19 students and two teachers in the deadliest school shooting since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Connecticut in 2012.

Congressional Democrats have renewed their push to pass additional regulations on firearms as two major pieces of legislation that would expand background checks have stalled in the Senate after passing the House last year. Members of both chambers of Congress have been working on potential gun legislation in recent days. The conversations center around expanding background checks and passing red flag laws, which would allow others to petition for an individual’s firearms to be temporarily removed if they might pose a threat to themselves or others.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), who previously represented the district where the Sandy Hook shooting occurred in the House before joining the Senate, has been a prominent voice in the push for gun legislation. Murphy, who will appear on CNN’s “State of the Union,” has said there is “growing momentum” for gun violence legislation based on conversations he has had as part of a bipartisan group of nine senators working on a deal.

Murphy scolded his colleagues last month for their inaction following the Uvalde shooting, saying that these types of incidents “only happens in this country.”

“I’m here on this floor to beg — to literally get down on my hands and knees and beg my colleagues — find a path forward here. Work with us to find a way to pass laws that make this less likely,” Murphy said the day the shooting happened.

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), who is also a member of the bipartisan group seeking an agreement, worked with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) after the Sandy Hook shooting to craft a bill to expand background checks in advance of gun sales, but the bill did not get the necessary 60 votes in the Senate necessary to overcome a Republican-led filibuster.

“I strongly believe that requiring background checks on all commercial sales of firearms is a completely reasonable policy that does not infringe upon the Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens,” Toomey tweeted last month.

He will appear on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) will also be on the show. Schiff introduced the Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act in 2019 to remove civil liability from gun manufacturers when their products are used in crimes.

Schiff called on Congress to act on gun legislation last month after a gunman shot multiple people at a church in California, one day after the Buffalo shooting.

Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas) said last month following the Uvalde shooting that these mass shootings are “an American problem that it seems many lawmakers refuse to solve.” The congressional district that Escobar represents includes El Paso, which was the site of a mass shooting at a Walmart in 2019 that killed 23 and injured more than 20 others.

“And the problem is that firearm homicides have increased 40 percent for people between the ages 10 and 24 years old in America. Those are the stats for 2020. It’s unacceptable, and I can’t believe lawmakers refuse to act,” Escobar said in an interview with CNN.

She will appear on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

On the other side of the political aisle, Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.) has said the United States should “absolutely” expand background checks to keep weapons out of the hands of potential shooters. Rice, who will be on ABC’s “This Week,” said in an interview with The Sun News, a newspaper in Myrtle Beach, S.C., that he supports giving law enforcement officials more access to an FBI database that notes when individuals have interacted with police.

“Our country needs to come together and do everything we can to stop this from happening again,” he tweeted after the Uvalde shooting. “Our children deserve better.”

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) has remained a staunch supporter of gun rights after being shot at a congressional baseball game in 2017. He will appear on “Fox News Sunday.”

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who will appear on “Sunday Morning Features,” has rejected Democrats’ calls for passing gun control legislation.

Below is the full list of guests scheduled to appear on this week’s Sunday talk shows:

ABC’s “This Week” — Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg; Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C).

CBS’s “Face the Nation” — Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.); Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.); Dr. Walter Koroshetz, director of the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

CNN’s “State of the Union” — Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo; Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.); Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas).

“Fox News Sunday” — Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.); Gene Sperling, an economic adviser to President Joe Biden.

FOX News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Features” — Rep. Kevin Mccarthy (R-Calif.), House Minority Leader; Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wy.), Republican Conference Chairman, Senate Cmte on Foreign Relations; John Ratcliffe, Fmr. Director of National Intelligence; James Craig, Fmr. Detroit Police Chief

NBC’s “Meet the Press” — Preempted by French Open coverage

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