Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) referred to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as a “common enemy” for not bringing a host of Democrat-backed anti-gun legislation to the Senate floor for a vote following a slew of recent mass shootings.
“Everyone has agreed on one commonality and that is guns. Whether the person is a white supremacist, whether the person is mentally ill, whether the person is inspired by somebody or just lashing out, the gun is the common factor,” Host Noah Trevor told Pressley during her appearance on “The Daily Show.” “What do you think America can do about people’s easy access to guns?”
“First, I want to say that guns are the common factor, and the common enemy in all this is Mitch McConnell,” Pressley responded. The Massachusetts congresswoman recited McConnell’s office phone number on air and urged viewers to lobby the Kentucky senator to pass a series of gun control measures.
Pressley’s heated assertion comes only a week after a crowd gathered at the majority leader’s home late at night as he was recovering from a broken shoulder. McConnell’s re-election campaign posted a video of the “angry left-wing mob,” where protesters can be heard wishing harm upon the senator. On the recording, an individual states that she hopes somebody would “just stab the mother***er in the heart” and wants for him to “break his neck.”
Pressley argued that if Congress would pass the so-called assault weapons ban and mandate universal background checks, then millions of American lives would be saved. She also added that the straw purchases and gun trafficking are two other issues that need to be addressed.
“So why haven’t we acted?” Pressley asked. “Because of a deficit of political courage and leadership despite a mandate from American citizens from every walk of life.”
After a deadly mass shooting at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, the government took swift action to change the country’s gun laws and initiated a nationwide gun confiscation of most automatic and semi-automatic firearms. Pressley repeatedly praised the move during her appearance on The Daily Show.
“We also know that there are more guns that people [in the United States],” Pressley said. “For as long as that is the case, you are going to see an intersectionality of violence.”
Despite naming McConnell as the “common enemy,” the progressive congresswoman claimed that President Donald Trump’s “dangerous” rhetoric is the reason why a deadly mass shooting was carried out in El Paso, Texas, which resulted in the death of more than 20 individuals and injured more than two dozen others.
She further contended that Trump has a long history of not only “racist rhetoric,” but also has “racist actions” and introduces new “racist, xenophobic policies” every day.
“This is really a distraction. These are things that he does to distract us from the corruptness, the chaos, and the callousness of this administration,” Pressley said. “But I cannot pretend this rhetoric isn’t dangerous – it’s exactly why El Paso happened.”