Activist CNN Anchor Baldwin Harasses FL GOP Rep. for Not Supporting Gun Grab

Afternoon CNN Newsroom anchor Brooke Baldwin has gained a reputation of being a liberal journalist, but Wednesday saw Baldwin take her activism to another level by brutally harassing Florida Republican State Representative Matt Caldwell for not being willing to “consider” an assault weapons ban.

Baldwin had an assist from Democratic State Senator Kevin Rader, but it was Baldwin who brutally berated Caldwell into accepting the far left position of a gun grab and reduction in Second Amendment rights while claiming that no one’s “asking for their guns to be taken away.”

 

 

She started by hounding him about why he voted no on the assault weapons ban. It didn’t sit well with her that Caldwell answered by saying the wording would have given extraordinary leeway in banning additional firearms. 

The most intense portion kicked up around 2:09 p.m. Eastern when Baldwin knocked Caldwell for having “a solid A-rating from the NRA” and lamented why he didn’t listen to the grieving Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students:

I mean, why, Representative, did you feel like you did not owe it to these young people to at least discuss this? To at least consider? This wasn't an up-down vote on the ban. It was to consider a motion on the vote.

Caldwell calmly responded that banning assault weapons is “a political stunt” but he respects the students and their views because he’s had friends murdered and commit suicide using a firearm. 

“Banning something just at a whim without going through the time or the process and it doesn't make any difference and so next time that you have a school shooting, then what do you say? What do you say to those parents and those friends of kids,” he added.

Baldwin then kicked into high gear as if she were working for Shannon Watts:

BALDWIN: Representative Caldwell, I don't want to talk about the next time. I don’t know about when you were young. When I was young, we had fire drills, we had tornado drills. I mean, these young people today have murder drills. 

CALDWELL: Yeah.

BALDWIN: The status quote is unacceptable. Why not at least give it a shot and owe it to these young people — sir, forgive me just a moment. Give it at shot to at least consider the ban. 

CALDWELL: We are going to consider proposals. You do that through committee. 

BALDWIN: But you voted no. 

CALDWELL: I disagree with Senator Rader. Well, I did because we don't pull bills out of committee, but again, we're getting off the topic. How is it that you’re going to address this?

BALDWIN: We're not getting off the topic. With all due respect. 

Later, Baldwin sided with a tweet from a Florida Democratic State Senator that used a non-sequitur to attack the lack of gun control but swift action by the legislature against pornography to browbeat Caldwell. Fortunately, he wasn’t going to take it.

Instead of debate, Baldwin shouted him down (to see the excerpt, click “expand”):

BALDWIN: Represent Caldwell, why is pornography —

CALDWELL: You can say that it was an assault weapons ban. People can read. People can read. People can read that it was a blanket ban and we’re not going to do.

BALDWIN: Why is pornography a bigger health risk than a semiautomatic weapon in the hands of a deranged individual? Answer my question, please, sir. 

CALDWELL: Listen, I believe — and we shouldn't have weapons in the hands of deranged individuals and, again, you keep trying to take this back to — what’s going to solve that?

BALDWIN: Why is that worthy of a debate? Why is pornography —

CALDWELL: We can have a debate. We will have —

BALDWIN: — worthy of a debate and not semiautomatic weapons? Just answer me that. 

CALDWELL: Trying to pull a bill, trying to pull a bill out of committee is a political stunt. We don’t do that. We’ve never done in that in the time I’ve been in the House on any issue.

BALDWIN: Stop going back to your talking points, sir. Stop! 

CALDWELL: And we can have that debate. We can have the debate in the committee. As I said, the governor is going to have his proposals. The house is going to release our proposals. We're trying to work in an bipartisan manner in order to have a set of proposals that will actually do something, that will actually protect citizens. I am no more going to take away citizens second amendment rights than I’m going to stand and try to censor the people who came up here today to exercise their First Amendment rights.

Next came Baldwin’s false assertion that “I don't think these people are asking for their guns to be taken away” to which Caldwell vehemently disagreed. Caught in this lie, Baldwin screamed:

BALDWIN: They're asking for you to consider — SIR! SIR! SIR! They are asking for you to consider a conversation — a consideration of a ban of a weapon used in war instead of having it in the hands 

CALDWELL: Brooke, we are — we are going to have a conversation

BALDWIN: — of a deranged individual which we have witnessed in so many shootings in this country. 

CALDWELL: We did. I had a conversation today.

BALDWIN: Why won’t you have that conversation. 

What Baldwin won’t acknowledge is that not everyone wants this ban because it’s simply not effective (see how the nationwide assault weapons ban didn’t stop Columbine) or how a firm majority of gun violence is committed using a handgun. The reality is Baldwin, fellow CNN activists, and other journalists are not interested in those facts.

To see the relevant transcript from CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin on February 21, click “expand”

CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin
February 21, 2018
2:05 p.m. Eastern

BROOKE BALDWIN: Representative Caldwell, though, I do want to begin with you. Why did you vote no on this motion to just even consider this ban on semiautomatic weapons and large capacity magazines. Why were you a no? 

FLORIDA REPUBLICAN STATE REPRESENTATIVE MATT CALDWELL: Well, absolutely. Thank you, Brooke and honestly, that bill would have been nearly all guns. So, let's be honest about what the proposal was. But the House doesn't pull bills out of committee.

BALDWIN: I'm sorry, what do you mean by nearly all guns? 

CALDWELL: The way you read the definition essentially all guns would be banned by that bill. So, it's not just talking about high capacity rifles, but, look, what we need to be focused on is solutions to this. You have a problem in this country —

BALDWIN: I'm sorry, just so we can be precise, Representative. What — what was the definition there? 

CALDWELL: I’d have to go back and you can certainly pull up the bill. It's on the House website. We have an open government. You can see how it's defined. It would cover more than high capacity rifles. But again, the focus has to be on what’s really going to solve this.

BALDWIN: This is your interpretation. Okay. 

CALDWELL: It's not an interpretation. It's very obvious and I encourage anybody to pull it up. It's an open government. Florida has a record of sunshine and you can see what the definition is in the bill proposed, but again, we want to get to a real debate on this. We want to have a debate in our committee process. We're committed to do that. We're waiting for the governor to give us his recommendation. He’s met with people all day yesterday. I met personally with Parkland survivors yesterday and talked with them and listened to their suggestions are. Some of which I think we can work on, but we’ve got to focus on what the real problem is. You've got a problem with these lone wolf terrorists. That's what these people are. And whether you're motivated by religion or civic unrest or just maniac fame which is what they really want in this instance, we’ve got to be focused on identifying those individuals. We saw a break down between the FBI, between the school district, and law enforcement in the Broward County community. If there's any way we can facilitate that, that’s what we absolutely need to achieve and then we have to make sure that people are empowered to defend themselves. It's no coincidence — it’s no coincidence these shootings continue to happen in places we've identified that nobody could defend themselves. Nobody can carry concealed. Even though concealed weapon permit holders are the safest people in our society. There's no one to be feared to have those people. You look around 20 million people in Florida, 2 million people have that permit. When you walk in the mall, one out of ten people you see is likely concealed carry and that’s not some problem that is metastasizing. It's actually making our streets safer. People are willing to defend themselves. That's what the Second Amendment is about and certainly what I'm going to do continue to focus on. 

BALDWIN: Okay. I just wanted to fully hear you out.

(....)

BALDWIN: Representative Caldwell, I mean, you have a solid A-rating from the NRA. We have been listening just speaking on the measure that you all voted down yesterday to consider this ban. I know you say it would have been all weapons, from everything I've read it would be these semiautomatic weapons and high capacity magazines. The students were standing there. You know, a week ago, they lost 17 friends and — and teachers and coaches and they were disappointed and visibly emotional. One 16-year-old said it seemed almost heartless how they immediately pushed the button to say no. I mean, why, Representative, did you feel like you did not owe it to these young people to at least discuss this? To at least consider? This wasn't an up-down vote on the ban. It was to consider a motion on the vote. 

CALDWELL: Sure. Sure. Listen, and what it turned out to be was a political stunt and I understand and I appreciate these students are grieving. I shared my experiences personally. I've had friends that have been murdered. I have friends commit suicide. Gun violence is a real thing, but you have to figure out what is the thing that is going to prevent it from happening in the future and the worst outcome, in my mind, is that we've put forth a proposal. Banned something just at a whim without going through the time or the process and it doesn't make any difference and so next time that you have a school shooting, then what do you say? What do you say to those parents and those friends of kids.

BALDWIN: Representative Caldwell, I don't want to talk about the next time. I don’t know about when you were young. When I was young, we had fire drills, we had tornado drills. I mean, these young people today have murder drills. 

CALDWELL: Yeah.

BALDWIN: The status quote is unacceptable. Why not at least give it a shot and owe it to these young people — sir, forgive me just a moment. Give it at shot to at least consider the ban. 

CALDWELL: We are going to consider proposals. You do that through committee. 

BALDWIN: But you voted no. 

CALDWELL: I disagree with Senator Rader. Well, I did because we don't pull bills out of committee, but again, we're getting off the topic. How is it that you’re going to address this?

BALDWIN: We're not getting off the topic. With all due respect. 

CALDWELL: We’re going to address this by being serious — 

(....)

CALDWELL: Brooke, listen — I’m as equally proud as the First Amendment as I am the Second Amendment.

BALDWIN: Representative Caldwell, hold on a second, it's my turn. Hang on a second, sir. Let me also add this. The bill's sponsor, Representative Carlos Guillermo-Smith from Orlando, he took to social media after this whole thing went down and it was voted ultimately no and wrote this: “17 [people] in Parkland were just murdered with an AR-15, + the FL House just passed @RossSpano’s [House Resolution] 157 declaring PORN as a public health risk. No, GUN VIOLENCE is a public health crisis + Spano blocked HB 219 banning assault weapons in his committee for 2 yrs.” Representative Caldwell, why is pornography a bigger health risk than semiautomatic weapons in the hands of a deranged individual? 

CALDWELL: Listen, we have got to focus on what is really going to make a difference and having a blanket ban. 

BALDWIN: Represent Caldwell, why is pornography —

CALDWELL: You can say that it was an assault weapons ban. People can read. People can read. People can read that it was a blanket ban and we’re not going to do.

BALDWIN: Why is pornography a bigger health risk than a semiautomatic weapon in the hands of a deranged individual? Answer my question, please, sir. 

CALDWELL: Listen, I believe — and we shouldn't have weapons in the hands of deranged individuals and, again, you keep trying to take this back to — what’s going to solve that?

BALDWIN: Why is that worthy of a debate? Why is pornography —

CALDWELL: We can have a debate. We will have —

BALDWIN: — worthy of a debate and not semiautomatic weapons? Just answer me that. 

CALDWELL: Trying to pull a bill, trying to pull a bill out of committee is a political stunt. We don’t do that. We’ve never done in that in the time I’ve been in the House on any issue.

BALDWIN: Stop going back to your talking points, sir. Stop! 

CALDWELL: And we can have that debate. We can have the debate in the committee. As I said, the governor is going to have his proposals. The house is going to release our proposals. We're trying to work in an bipartisan manner in order to have a set of proposals that will actually do something, that will actually protect citizens. I am no more going to take away citizens second amendment rights than I’m going to stand and try to censor the people who came up here today to exercise their First Amendment rights.

BALDWIN: I don't think these people are asking for their guns to be taken away. 

CALDWELL: They are exactly the same. No, but that is the same. No, that is —

BALDWIN: I don't think these people are asking for their guns to be taken away. 

CALDWELL: Brooke, Brooke, Brooke, it is. Brooke, it’s the definition.

BALDWIN: They're asking for you to consider — SIR! SIR! SIR! They are asking for you to consider a conversation — a consideration of a ban of a weapon used in war instead of having it in the hands 

CALDWELL: Brooke, we are — we are going to have a conversation

BALDWIN: — of a deranged individual which we have witnessed in so many shootings in this country. 

CALDWELL: We did. I had a conversation today.

BALDWIN: Why won’t you have that conversation. 

CALDWELL: I had — I had the conversation with the Parkland students today. We're going to have the conversation in committee through the process that we use for every bill that we’ve every passed in the House and on the floor. We’re not going to circumvent that process for any issue. The point of it is to be able to hear everybody's voices and make sure that we do the right thing. Something that’s going to be effective, not just pull a political stunt and, look, this is a real issue and a real tragedy for these kids. As I said, I met with them. I shared the tragedies that happened in my own life. I get it. I understand it. I don't want to make them think we've done something that doesn't make any difference. These are lone wolf terrorists. These are people that we need to be able to identify. We had failures in law enforcement. That doesn't address the failures in law enforcement. We don't have an ability for people to defend themselves in our schools. Our schools are targeted because they are gun-free zones because no one on the campus is able to defend themselves. It's why you don't have this problem any other place.

BALDWIN: Okay.

CALDWELL: And why it seems to happen exclusively in places where people can't defend themselves. 

BALDWIN: Okay. Senator Rader, not trying to ignore you. I just wanted to have a conversation with Representative Caldwell there. Go ahead. 

RADER: You know, I know. You know what? Representative Caldwell has to defend why they didn't want to hear a motion to bring in one of the worst tragedies in Florida history and might I add, the reason after the Orlando Pulse shooting that killed 49 people in Orlando, and after the Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting, the reason that this legislature behind me — why we didn't do anything then and we’re — we’re talking about it now is because this happened during our session. See, the thoughts and prayers thing is — it lasted for a short period of time and people forget about it and it becomes old news and it becomes stale. We're right now in session. The legislature has to act. The Governor has to act and the State House could have acted, could have done something yesterday very easily. They could have had the debate. This is not a new debate. This is something that has been around for many years and everyone has probably a strong opinion about it. They did not want it to happen. 

BALDWIN: Now, Senator —

RADER: Period. If the presiding officer wanted to hear this debate, he could have waived the rules and could have done it and had that debate yesterday. 

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