Also, his courage and conscience: On last night’s Hardball, we got the latest story.
Why has Senator Casey now flipped on guns? Earlier, Senator Warner said he was pretty much turned by his daughters. (See THE DAILY HOWLER, 12/19/12.)
In the case of Senator Casey, it seems the wisdom came from his wife! Again, Chris Matthews seemed to believe the latest story—a story of conscience and courage:
MATTHEWS (12/20/12): I was absolutely stunned today to that see Bobby Casey, the senator from Pennsylvania, who’s a classic Pennsylvania—in the past, he’s received a B-plus or an A rating from the NRA—As with Warner, so with Casey—Chris seemed to be buying the story. Let’s make sure we understand what Bobby Casey has said:
He told the Philadelphia Inquirer he’ll now come back for both a—he’s coming out for both a new assault weapons ban and legislation banning high-round magazines.
The Inquirer reported Casey said his decision amounted to being, quote, "summoned by your conscience.” Casey told the Inquirer his wife had pressed him to rethink his position on gun safety in the wake of Newtown.
Casey said, quote, "The power of the weapon, the number of bullets that hit each child, that was so to me, just so chilling. It haunts me. It should haunt every public official. If those two bills come before the Senate, I’ll will vote for both."
That is a risky, strong, courageous act by Bob Casey in a state that is very pro-gun. Erin.
MCPIKE: It is, but remember, he is not the only one. Joe Manchin, the senator from West Virginia, on Monday was saying that this has changed his thinking. Of course, these are two Democrats, but—
MATTHEWS: No, but Manchin hasn’t said he will vote for these two bills. Bobby Casey just said he would. It’s different to have conversations. It’s another thing to make a commitment.
When the Columbine High School kids got shot, that didn’t chill or haunt him. His conscience didn’t kick in.
It didn’t chill or haunt him when all those students at Virginia Tech got killed. Still no word from his conscience!
It didn’t chill or haunt him when his colleague, Gabby Giffords, got shot—when others around her were shot and killed. Nor when all those young adults got killed in that movie theater.
Bobby Casey wasn't shocked until it happened to first graders! Only then was he summoned by conscience. And even then, he only rethought his position on the advice of his wife!
Motives don’t matter as much as positions; Casey and Warner have now changed theirs. But do you think their stories make sense, as Chris seems willing to do?
What kind of person doesn’t get shocked until they start shooting groups of first graders—and even then, only rethinks his stance on the advice of his daughters or wife? What kindoif person isn't summoned by “conscience” if it’s just high school or college students who are getting killed?
Do you believe what Bobby said? Chris now plays on the liberal team. Perhaps for that reason, he seems inspired by the senator’s courage.