U.S. Senator Joe Manchin fired back Wednesday evening against claims he is lying to West Virginians about his gun stance.
“I’m a proud gun owner,” said Manchin in a statement. “Nobody is going to take my guns and I sure as hell not going to let them take your guns.”
Manchin made the statement following remarks made at the State Capitol by the Executive Vice President of the National Association for Gun Rights Dudley Brown.
“He’s lying to West Virginians when he has this pro-gun image, yet goes back to Washington, D.C. and starts talking about expanding the Brady registration system,” said Brown on Wednesday’s MetroNews Talkline.
Manchin referred to the comments as “a bunch of crap” and added that people don’t know what they are talking about.
Brown was at the State Capitol urging Manchin to vote against any additions to current federal background check requirements for gun purchases.
“Senator Joe Manchin is one of the cornerstones and keystones for passing (President) Barack Obama’s gun control agenda in Washington, D.C.,” Brown said.
Right now, only guns sales to individuals from federally licensed gun dealers require background checks.
Brown says even that existing requirement infringes on the Second Amendment. “We’ve now agreed that this right is now a privilege that we’ve got to ask government permission prior to exercising,” he said.
He says adding to the check requirements will not prevent any future mass shootings. “These systems don’t work. They never have worked. All they do is create lists of gun owners,” Brown said.
After the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut last December, President Barack Obama proposed universal background checks as part of a larger gun control package.
Senator Manchin is one of four U.S. Senators working on a different plan for expanding background check requirements. Manchin said the bill he is working on will not take guns away from West Virginians.
“The only bill that I have worked on and am working on is one that will keep guns out of the hands of criminals and people mentally deranged,” said Manchin. “And that’s a fact.”
The others who are reportedly part of the talks are Republican Senator Tom Coburn from Oklahoma, Republican Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois and Democrat Senator Charles Schumer.
“Frankly, we don’t want it,” Brown said of the group’s potential plan. “We want it stopped.”