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Senate hopeful wants teachers to carry machine guns in schools

South Carolina state Sen. Lee Bright said that school teachers should be able to carry machine guns to protect students from gun violence.
Sen. Lee Bright
South Carolina State Sen. Lee Bright, R-Spartanburg, speaks at the Statehouse in Columbia, S.C.

What would prevent school shootings? Arming teachers with machine guns. 

Republican State Senator Lee Bright, who is challenging Sen. Lindsey Graham in the Republican primary, said that a school teacher should be able to carry any type of gun -- including a machine gun -- to protect their students from gun violence.

Appearing on Fox News’ “The Alan Colmes Show” Friday, the tea party favorite expanded on his proposal for school districts in South Carolina that would incorporate guns into school curriculum and have high schools teach gun use. 

Bright was asked if teachers should be allowed to carry guns, even machine guns, in schools. 

"I would think a teacher protecting a school grounds should be able to carry whatever she can carry legally," the lawmaker said. 

"So should machine guns be legal to carry?" Colmes asked.

The state senator argued it was imperative to protect the Second Amendment above all else.

"The Second Amendment is pretty clear. It says the right to carry arms should not be infringed," Bright replied.

"So you should be able to have any gun you want?" the conservative host pressed.

"I don't see how the government can regulate it," Bright said.

In 1986, Congress passed the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act, which forbids the sale to civilians of all machine guns made after the law took effect.  

The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in District of Columbia v. Heller that individuals are allowed to possess firearms "unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that firearm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home."

Justice Antonin Scalia recognized the right expressed in the Second Amendment is not "unlimited," writing that the court can limit "the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons." 

"Nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws impos­ing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms," Scalia wrote in his opinion.