Jake Tapper Asks Marco Rubio If We Should Ignore Terror Watch Lists In Wake Of GOP Gun Vote

Jake Tapper Asks Marco Rubio If We Should Ignore Terror Watch Lists In Wake Of GOP Gun Vote

Over the past few days, Republican Presidential candidate Marco Rubio has been making the news talk show rounds in an effort to present himself as a super-tough no-nonsense fighter of terrorism. Of course, that mostly just consists of him hammering away at that feckless terrorist sympathizer Obummer while declaring we are at war with Islam. At the same time, Rubio has also been letting voters know that he is totally going to make sure that they’ll get to keep all their guns, which led to his silly remark about “bomb control”.

To bolster his gun rights cred, Rubio joined nearly every other Republican Senator last week in voting to allow people whose names appear on terror watch lists to still be able to purchase firearms. Obviously, this vote kind of flies in the face of all the tough talk Rubio has been dishing regarding radical Islamic terrorism, and he was confronted on it during an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union Sunday. Speaking to host Jake Tapper, Rubio struggled to adequately answer why he’d allow people flagged as potential terrorists to legally buy guns while simultaneously feeling we need to do more to combat terrorism.

A somewhat puzzled Tapper asked Rubio the following question:

“How does this proactive approach when it comes to having people on your radar, in terms of the U.S. government looking for terrorists, how does it square with the fact that on Thursday, the day after the attack in San Bernardino, you and every Republican in the Senate voted no, except for Mark Kirk I should point out, you and almost every Republican in the Senate voted no on legislation that would have kept people on terrorist watch lists from being able to purchase firearms or explosives?”

“President Obama calls it insane that people on the no-fly list can walk in and buy explosives or a gun,” the CNN anchor added. Rubio then delivered a lightly-tossed word salad, claiming the majority of people who are on watch lists are there by accident and that we need to allow them to legally purchase guns and ammo so their 2nd Amendment rights won’t be “impeded with” (yes, he said impeded…remember, Rubio is one of the ‘smart’ ones).

Looking like a parent dealing with an idiot child, Tapper stated that he doubts highly that the majority of the people of no-fly lists are there mistakenly. Rubio claimed his office deals with dozens of people who claim they are on the lists and shouldn’t be. This then led to Tapper’s coup-de-grace.

“So these watch lists should just be ignored?”


The Florida Senator was caught a bit by surprise, leading to him saying that we shouldn’t ignore them but reiterating his feeling that too many people are on the lists by accident. (The bill he voted against would allow those mistakenly on a terror watch list to file an appeal in order to purchase a firearm.)

Tapper proved on Sunday that Rubio and other Republicans have placed themselves in a quandary with their recent rejection of certain gun restrictions.  Sure, they get to stay in the good graces of the NRA. But, all their tough talk about terrorism and national security and how Obama and the Democrats are doing what’s necessary to stop radical killers is just that — talk.

Below is video of the interview, courtesy of Media Matters:


Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona is the founder/publisher of Contemptor and a contributor to The Daily Beast. He was previously the Cable News Correspondent for Mediaite and prior to starting Contemptor, he worked on the editorial staff of PoliticusUSA. During that time, he had his work quoted by USA Today and BBC News, among others. Justin began his published career as a political writer for 411Mania. He resides in St. Louis, MO with his wife and pets.