Following this week’s mass shooting at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 children and two adults dead, Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy called out his fellow senators for their inaction over gun control as he works towards a bipartisan agreement to make our schools safer.
During an appearance on “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” Murphy promised Americans that he’s in discussions with “half a dozen or more” Republican senators in the hopes of plotting a new course forward in the ongoing gun debate. Above all, I have stressed that the fight is not hopeless.
“You’re up at this moment where there’s so many Americans who have become so numb to the pace of these mass shootings,” Murphy said. “I just can’t let that happen. I can’t let people in this country believe we can’t change this. Because we can. We’re the only country in the high-income world where kids fear for their lives when they go to school. We have power over this.”
Murphy became senator of Connecticut shortly before 2013’s shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School left 28 dead. His hope for change after the tragedy quickly extinguished as he says he realized the issue is “all about political power,” of which the NRA had “tons.” But he’s seen a balancing of the scales in the ensuing decade and he is hopeful the country is finally on the precipice of tangible change.
“The gun lobby is weaker, they’re practically bankrupt,” he told Meyers. “So we’re at this moment where maybe, maybe, maybe the balance of political power has shifted. Maybe enough voters care about this that they’re going to send a message — ‘If you don’t vote with us, if you don’t vote with our kids, we’re voting you out of office.’ But it’s taken 10 years to really equalize the political power on guns.”
The senator recounted how he was presiding over the Senate on the day of the tragedy when his phone began going off and he learned that another elementary school mass shooting had taken place, which led to his comments quickly surfacing throughout the media.
“I decided to go down to the floor immediately after and simply say to my colleagues, ‘Why on Earth did you spend all this time running for the United States Senate if you’re going to do nothing?’”