ROCK HILL — U.S. Rep. Mick Mulvaney made clear on Tuesday night his position on gun control, telling a crowd of about 200 people in Rock Hill that hell oppose legislation banning assault weapons and restricting high-capacity ammunition magazines.
Debate over gun laws has been thrust to the forefront of lawmakers minds since the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
Mulvaney, a second-term Republican from Indian Land, said at a town hall-style meeting at York Technical Colleges Baxter Hood Center that its not likely Congress will pass an assault weapons ban or restrictions on ammunition.
A legislative clamp-down on background checks for gun shoppers is possible, Mulvaney said, and hed support it.
Mulvaney represents the 5th Congressional District, which includes York, Chester and Lancaster counties.
Out of about 15 gun control proposals floating around Washington, Mulvaney said he thinks new legislation about background checks and high-capacity ammunition magazines will get the most debate.
A lot of folks myself included had forgotten that you could go to a dealer at a gun show and buy a gun without a background check, Mulvaney said.
My guess is you may see some changes on that.
He will not support legislation that deals with background checks on private sales between friends or family members, Mulvaney said.
The background check is not a perfect solution, he said. Less than 1 percent of all the guns used in crimes are purchased at gun shows.
Many states, including South Carolina, he said, do not do a very good job on sharing their mental health information with those databases, which weakens existing background check regulations.
He will continue to fight a federal restriction on high-capacity ammunition magazines, Mulvaney said, but most all-out bans proposed are dead in the water in Washington.
About the fiscal cliff
Mulvaney spent much of the more than two-hour meeting answering questions from the audience about the fiscal cliff agreement and ongoing spending negotiations in Washington.
The nations lawmakers face a March 1 deadline to act on a $110 billion across-the-board spending cut, known as the sequester.
Part of the cuts include an 11 percent slash of the federal defense departments more than $500 billion budget.
Im one of those Republicans who thinks we should be looking to the defense department for ways to save money, he said.
However, the 11 percent cut to military spending, Mulvaney said, is not the way to rein in defense costs.
There will be real impacts to our national defense as a result of these cuts.
Anna Douglas • 803-329-4068