May 30, 2022 - Politics & Policy

GOP Rep. Adam Kinzinger is "open" to AR-15 restrictions

Rep. Adam Kinzinger speaks at Kennedy-King College in 2019. Photo: Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Illinois) said Sunday he's open to a federal ban on AR-15 rifles, saying his position has changed in the wake of the Uvalde, Texas, shooting.

Driving the news: "Look, I have opposed a ban, you know, fairly recently. I think I'm open to a ban now," Kinzinger told CNN.

  • "It's going to depend on what it looks like because there's a lot of nuances on what constitutes, you know, certain things," he added.

Details: Kinzinger said an "extra license" or "extra training" may be required to own weapons like an AR-15. He also supports universal background checks and "red flag" laws, per CNN.

  • He has previously said it's a "no-brainer" to raise age requirements for owning a handgun, per Business Insider.
  • "At that point it's like, 'OK, this is getting out of hand,'" Kinzinger told CNN. "The problem is everyone is scared to inaction. They're frightened of the loudest voices. And 90% of Americans are begging that we do something."

Yes, but: Second Amendment supporters may need to come up with solutions for gun control, Kinzinger said this weekend.

  • "I'm a strong defender of the Second Amendment," he said in an interview on ABC's "This Week" on Sunday. "And one of the things I believe that for some reason is a very rare thing is that as a person that appreciates and believes in the Second Amendment, we have to be the ones putting forward reasonable solutions to gun violence."

The big picture: President Biden told reporters Monday that "rational Republicans" could act on gun control soon.

  • "I think things have gotten so bad that everybody is getting more rational about it,” Biden said. "At least, that's my hope."
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he recently encouraged Texas Sen. John Cornyn to meet with Democrats to find a compromise on new gun control legislation, per CNN. Biden said McConnell was "a rational Republican."
  • Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday that "many more Republicans" are "willing to talk" about gun control legislation after the recent shooting, Axios Ivana Saric reports.
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