Illinois Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth is asking for a sensible and calm debate over gun control in the House, she told Chuck Todd Wednesday morning on The Daily Rundown. Duckworth is one of the first female combat veterans to serve in the House, and is one of 106 veterans in the 113th Congress.
Duckworth, who lost both legs and part of the use of her arm after an explosion while serving in Iraq, told Todd she wanted to see a reasonable conversation occur between lawmakers who were for stricter gun laws and those who were against tighter policies.
"We need sensible gun control laws, we need background checks, we need to make sure that we don't have weapons that can kill a large number of people in just a few seconds," Duckworth said, "but we also need to make sure our marksmen, like myself, have access to the guns they're going to use for target practice."
She noted that this debate was the reason Congress needs more combat veterans—to show other lawmakers that it's possible to set aside their political differences in order to have a necessary conversation.
"I think it's very important that we have more combat veterans serving in the Congress on both sides of the aisle. I do think that that shared experience will allow us to work with one another and hopefully cooperate. One of the things about being in the military is it's all about the mission. It's not about you or your personal ideologies; it's about getting the mission done."
Duckworth added, "You can do target practice with rifles without needing an M16 to do it, so let's have a sensible conversation. I think those military veterans that are here can talk in greater detail about weapons and their functions and what is or what isn't an assault weapon."