Tim Scott Sidesteps Gun Control Question With 2 Go-To GOP Talking Points

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) tried to distract from real questions about gun control when asked about the Supreme Court’s recent decision to reverse a ban on bump stocks during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week” Sunday morning.

The South Carolina politician turned his attention to President Joe Biden and immigration when asked about the court overturning a Trump-era ban on the gun accessory, which Scott previously said he’d help pass into law.

“What we need to focus on is the violence we’re seeing across the nation,” Scott told journalist Jonathan Karl. “Under Joe Biden, communities have been devastated and ravaged by a wave of violent crime that we haven’t seen in five decades.”

“Focusing on ways for us to reduce that crime means getting four more years of Donald Trump,” added Scott, who is said to be on the short list for the Republican vice presidential pick.

Scott got a swift fact-check from Karl, who reminded him, “Actually senator, as you probably know, the latest stats on violent crime and on the murder rate show they’re actually down this past year.”

According to a report from the FBI released last week, violent crime dropped 15% nationwide during the first quarter of 2024.

Though the senator said it was “nice to see” the numbers “plateau,” he claimed the threat of violent crime was leaving people “trapped in their houses” from sundown to sunrise.

Karl tried to return to the topic of bump stocks, asking Scott if he’d still back a bump stock ban, a move which he said would “fly through congress” in 2018. The politician again punted and said, “Well, I’m strongly in support of the 2nd Amendment.”

The Trump administration tried to ban bump stocks through executive action after the attachments were used during the 2017 attack on a Las Vegas music festival which killed 60 people. The tragedy remains the deadliest mass shooting in American history.

When Karl returned to his question, Scott shifted the blame to immigrants crossing the southern U.S. border.

“We’re gonna focus on the priorities of the American people, and what the priorities of the American people are today is to focus on closing our southern border,” he said.

“Under Donald Trump, we had a precipitous drop in illegal border crossings … under Joe Biden, we’ve seen an explosion. Ten million illegal immigrants have invaded our country, leading to migrant crime that we just saw just yesterday.”

“OK, so you’re not going to answer that question,” Karl concluded.

Watch ABC’s full interview with Tim Scott here: