Unless the NRA forgets his name or his extremist political base is suddenly struck with a bolt of reason, Gov. Abbott will not address the gun reform issue in any meaningful way. But he will continue to play games – to the point of lying – with gun-weary Texans, including the families and friends of mass shooting victims.
Recently, the Uvalde school board made the politically necessary but wasted effort of passing a resolution asking the governor to call a special legislative session to raise the legal age for purchasing an assault-style rifle from 18 to 21. This, of course, was in response to the fact that the 18-year-old shooter who killed 19 elementary students and two teachers with an assault rifle had easily and legally purchased his weapon from a local gun store.
When a reporter for The Texas Tribune asked for a response from the governor’s office to the school board’s request, an Abbott spokesperson replied that the governor “has taken immediate action to address all aspects” of the Uvalde tragedy.
That was a deliberate, direct lie because the governor has done nothing to address the most critical aspect of the shooting – the ease with which the shooter obtained his murder weapon. Nor has Abbott done anything to keep guns out of the hands of other dangerous people and potential mass shooters.
His spokesperson added, “All options remain on the table.”
Another lie. As far as guns are concerned, the only thing remaining on Abbott’s table is a pile of campaign cash from the gun lobby.
As long as he is in office, Greg Abbott will never seek to enact sensible gun reform laws, not even to protect young children who are among the most vulnerable of his constituents. I would be happy to see the governor prove me wrong, but that isn’t going to happen.