Martin O’Malley says San Bernardino rampage might finally force change in gun laws

Democratic presidential candidate Martin O’Malley expressed hope Thursday that the rampage that left 14 people dead in San Bernardino, California, might finally lead the country to tighten its gun laws.

“We’ve now had more mass shootings than we’ve had days in this year, and perhaps this is the incident that tips the balance and we finally do this,” he told Fusion’s Jorge Ramos.

When Ramos pressed him, suggesting that nothing ever seems to bridge the ideological divide over guns, the former Maryland governor pointed out that more than 400,000 people have been killed by guns in the United States since the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

“And the vast majority of them are guns in the hands of other native-born Americans,” he said. “Perhaps this is that incident where we see that there’s actually a connection here, that it’s not safe, it’s not right, it’s not responsible for us to allow people to buy combat weapons, combat assault weapons so readily in our country. We’re the only developed nation on the planet that allows that.”

As investigators searched for a motive in San Bernardino, President Obama said Thursday that it was possible the attack was “terrorist-related.” O’Malley, too, said it “looks like it has some terrorist overtones possibly,” and he stressed a need for the country to adjust to what he called “the changing nature of conflict.”

“We need to continue to improve our information-sharing, our intelligence-gathering,” he said. “Connecting the dots. I mean, here’s a person who had traveled from Saudi Arabia, who owned more than one combat assault weapon, and how do we better connect those dots?”

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