Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) made headlines Monday for once again bucking the conservative wing of his party to support comprehensive immigration reform. But when it came to the other big story of the day, gun violence, McCain stuck mostly to the right’s talking points.
Though he signaled support for expanded background checks — the main goal of gun control advocates post-Newtown — McCain also said a ban on so-called assault weapons as well as high-capacity magazines would be meaningless to a country hoping to reduce firearms deaths.
“I’ve not seen how that would improve the situation at all,” McCain told CNN. “I think the burden of proof has to be on those who want such a thing.”
McCain said that Norway, site of one of the worst gun massacres in recent memory, “had the strictest gun control laws in the world.”
McCain did say better background checks are something he could get behind.
“If there are improvements that need to be made, as I said, to keep these weapons out of the hands of criminals, I’m sure all Americans, including the NRA, would agree with them, I would think,” he said. The NRA has generally opposed universal background checks for firearms purchases.