Sen. Angus King, an Independent from Maine, said Tuesday he would not support a ban on assault rifles because he doesn’t like banning things based on how they look.
MSNBC’s Willie Geist asked King if he believed civilians should be banned from owning “military-style” weapons like AR-15s.
“No, I think we’ve gotta look at that carefully,” King said. “Here’s the problem: I’m from a state where we have one of the highest gun ownership rates in the country and yet we have one of the lowest rates of crime.”
“It’s called an assault weapon, but it’s simply a semi-automatic hunting rifle in costume with a different stock,” King said, dismantling a common term used by gun control advocates. “The functionality of the weapon is exactly the same.”
King noted that there are many so-called “assault weapons” in his state that are used by legitimate hunters.
“I have a problem with banning a weapon because of its appearance,” he concluded.