By Leo Wolfson, political reporter
Cowboy State Daily
Despite a CNN story on Tuesday that appeared to show U.S. Sen. Cynthia Lummis having a change of heart on some gun control measures, her spokeswoman on Wednesday said the senator’s positions have not shifted
“The headline used by CNN didn’t accurately reflect the quote Senator Lummis gave them,” Abegail Cave said. “She is a strong defender of the Second Amendment, and will always defend the right of law-abiding citizens to bear arms.”
In response to recent mass shooting events, Lummis said her office has received a wave of phone calls from Wyoming constituents expressing an openness toward making legislative solutions intended to prevent future mass shootings.
In CNN’s story, Lummis was categorized as now giving consideration to a package of bills that could include changes to red flag laws, mental health programs, school security and juvenile background checks, because of the calls.
“That’s something that I’d be inclined to want to look at,” CNN reported Lummis saying. “So many juvenile records seem to be expunged and the clock is set back to zero the day they turn 18. So I think that is something worth considering shortly.”
However, Cave said Lummis’ stance hasn’t changed on any of these issues. In the past, Lummis has opposed red flag laws and other gun control approaches, but supported improving mental health as an alternative to these measures.
The calls come in response to the recent Uvalde, Texas shooting that left 19 children and two teachers dead, just 10 days after a supermarket massacre in Buffalo, N.Y. that killed 10.
Cave said although she does not have any numbers for how many calls their office has received, she said it has been a strong “influx” compared to what they normally gets. She said these calls have come from a mix of pro Second Amendment and pro gun control constituents. Cave said every office on Capitol Hill has received an increase in calls.
Lummis has historically been a staunch supporter of gun rights and state’s rights, earning a lifetime A plus rating from the National Rifle Association. On the issue of mass shootings and other related events, Lummis has said addressing mental health is the way to solve these atrocities rather than gun restrictions. It is an issue of particular importance in Wyoming, as the state has the highest suicide rate in the country.
“Instead of attacking Americans’ Constitutional right to bear arms, we should be focusing on how to prevent this kind of dangerous behavior with mental health treatment and hardening schools,” Cave said on behalf of Lummis. “No child should feel in danger while at school, and parents shouldn’t have to worry about their child’s safety while at school.”
House Democrats are already working on eight gun control bills under the broader “Protecting Our Kids Act.”
Senate Republicans and Lummis have consistently blocked gun control legislation. They opposed efforts to tighten gun regulations both when they held the majority, and now when they can deny such bills with a filibuster.
On Wednesday morning, a pre-recorded video from Miah Cerrillo, an 11-year-old Uvalde student who survived the mass shooting, was played before the House Oversight Committee. Also testifying were two parents of a victim from the shooting, pressing the congress members for gun control.