WAMU 88.5 : News

With Gun Control Measures Unlikely, Congress Turns Focus To Contractors

In the wake of this week’s shooting at the Navy Yard some lawmakers in the region are renewing their push for new gun control measures. But while that effort is unlikely to go anywhere, there seems to be bipartisan agreement the Pentagon needs to review the access it grants contractors.

After last year's Newtown, Conn. school shooting, Capitol Hill witnessed its first real debate on gun control in decades. That effort to implement near universal background checks fell six votes short, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says this week’s shooting in D.C. hasn’t changed the math—so he isn’t bringing it up for another vote.

Still, Virginia Democratic Senator Tim Kaine says there will be more mass shootings if lawmakers do nothing.

“There are commonsense things we can do that don’t infringe on anybody’s Second Amendment rights that will make us safer. This place has perfected a million reasons not to do anything. And the lack of action, we’re just going to see more of these and there’s going to be more of them, and eventually then we’ll get tired enough to act. Why not act sooner rather than later?”, he asked.

The alleged Navy Yard shooter worked for a private contractor and gained access using a valid security badge. Between that and the recent leak of a highly classified surveillance program by N.S.A. contractor Edward Snowden, Kaine says lawmakers need to reexamine the access granted to contractors.

“We’re really troubled. When you look at a Snowden and then you look at this—obviously very different kinds of things—but instances of folks with security clearances doing horrible things. It does raise a very significant concern," he said.

The Pentagon is preparing to conduct a review of the physical security structures at military bases, though D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton is calling for an independent Investigative panel to conduct a review of the shooting.

NPR

Undead Hipsters And An Abstract Alien Star In Two Arty Horror Pics

Every so often an arthouse director dips a toe into the horror genre and you realize vampires and space aliens are subjects too rich to be the property of schlockmeisters, says critic David Edelstein.
NPR

Hunting For The Tastiest Egg: Duck, Goose, Chicken Or Quail?

We hard-boiled them. We donned blindfolds. And we chowed down. In our eggsperiment, can you guess which bird prevailed in the ultimate showdown of duck vs. chicken?
NPR

Why Scott Walker Is Looking Beyond His Fan Base

Governors in both parties routinely run for re-election while keeping coy about the White House. But there's no question what's on the Wisconsin governor's mind, long term.
NPR

Should College Dropouts Be Honored By Their Alma Maters?

From a Top Gun sequel starring drones to Howard University's pick of Puff Daddy as its commencement speaker, the Barbershop guys weigh in on the week's news.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.