Ted Cruz said that Chicago’s strict gun laws are evidence that “gun control doesn’t work” after Labor Day weekend in the city saw seven people shot dead and 34 wounded. The city’s mayor, Lori Lightfoot, quickly fought back with words of her own––and actual facts.
“60% of illegal firearms recovered in Chicago come from outside IL-mostly from states dominated by coward Republicans like you who refuse to enact common sense gun legislation. Keep our name out of your mouth,” Lightfoot tweeted.
60% of illegal firearms recovered in Chicago come from outside IL—mostly from states dominated by coward Republicans like you who refuse to enact commonsense gun legislation. Keep our name out of your mouth. https://t.co/yVM4JHL3xy pic.twitter.com/pr613A3dpf
— Lori Lightfoot (@LightfootForChi) September 3, 2019
The data that she cited showed that Indiana, Mississippi and Wisconsin were three states that many recovered firearms are sourced from. The report found that Chicago’s neighboring state of Indiana brought in 1 in 5 illegal guns.
Despite Lightfoot’s tweet, she and Cruz got into a heated debate on Twitter. Both are from states that have recently seen at least one mass shooting. There were two in Texas in August alone, so it’s unclear how Cruz thinks that gun control is working better there.
Lightfoot continued after Cruz on Twitter and slammed him in front of reporters in Chicago.
“Given the tragedy that’s happened in Texas over the last few weeks, tragedies plural, it’s surprising to me that Senator Cruz would do anything other than work his butt off to better represent the citizens of Texas,” Lightfoot said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “There’s a great need across this country for federal leadership in particular to step up and come forward with a real plan to deal with the gun violence that we’re seeing not only in cities like Chicago but really across the country.”
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If “you really care about Chicagoans, Texans and everyone facing gun violence, take action,” Lightfoot wrote in a tweet that also tagged Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky. “Do your job.”
Cruz tweeted the common refrain from those who don’t want gun reform and who often criticize Chicago for attempting to control the flow of guns through the city.
“Gun control doesn’t work,” Cruz wrote. “Look at Chicago. Disarming law-abiding citizens isn’t the answer. Stopping violent criminals — prosecuting & getting them off the street — BEFORE they commit more violent crimes is the most effective way to reduce murder rates. Let’s protect our citizens.”
However, Chicago does not have the nation’s toughest gun laws, according to debunking done by The Washington Post’s Fact Checker, PolitiFact and NPR. Conservatives who cite Chicago also do not take into account it’s high population.