Here is an excerpt from the January 5th, 2016 transcript of All In with Chris Hayes.
Joining me now, Congressman Michael Burgess, Republican from Texas, whose statement today on the president's executive actions on gun control reads in part, quote, “Americans deserve a leader who does not regard the Constitution as a suggest (sic) for the model on which our government should exist.”
HAYES: OK. Let me ask you this. You come from a state that has just inaugurated this year a fairly expansive open carry legislation. There was a long gun open carry in Texas. There's now a handgun open carry. There's also carry, if I'm not mistaken, in the Texas capital right now in Austin.
Do you think that would be a good idea in the U.S. Capitol? I mean, my understanding is advocates of guns think they make spaces safer. Should we get rid of the metal detectors and have guns in the Capitol?
BURGESS: Well, certainly, a discussion we can have. I just point out that although Texas is now an open carry state, it was one of the few states that did not have –
BURGESS: – an open carry provision –
HAYES: No, but I'm –
BURGESS: – and I mean that goes back really to the time of reconstruction.
HAYES: I'm curious –
BURGESS: So, is it appropriate that Texas has moved forward with this? I think so.
SCRIBER: Chris manages to return to the original question.
HAYES: But I'm curious just personally, you go to work in that building every day. Would you Congressman Michael Burgess feel safer if they got rid of the metal detectors and they let people just carry their side arms into Congress?
SCRIBER: But Burgess never really answers the question.
BURGESS: I don't know that it would make a material difference to me. The fact of the matter remains, when I go into any public venue, you don't know what you're getting into.
HAYES: So you would support that?
BURGESS: In general, do I feel safe when I go into public venues where there are not metal detectors? The answer is, of course, I do.
HAYES: But you would support that in Congress? You would support people bringing weapons into the capitol?
BURGESS: Look, I think it all can be part of the discussion. If that's the direction people want to go, I think it's something that needs – deserves to be heard.
That's an answer of sorts. Basically for the gun rights crowd, no argument favoring guns is too silly. So let's let all our guns hang out - anywhere and everywhere.
Imagine, if you will, a gallery full of armed visitors in the House or Senate witnessing a heated exchange on the floor.
But if we promote handgun open carry in the halls of Congress, should SCOTUS be exempt? Imagine arguments on a divisive issue like abortion rights before the Court in a room full of armed partisans.
Should the White House be exempt? Never mind the political party of the President. Do we want a horde of visitors to the WH packing guns, open or concealed? I think Ronald Reagan would have an answer for that.
Will arming public school teachers prevent the next massacre? Probably not. So let's pass a law mandating open carry for every school child.
And it goes on and on. Mr. Burgess might want to answer a more fundamental question before getting into the matter of guns in public places: do we really want a society driven by fear and firearms? If so, me thinks our happiness quotient will not improve.