In the wake of the mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 59 people and wounded more than 500, Colorado Republican Senator Cory Gardner called it "an evil act" but said he does not support efforts for stronger gun control.
Senator Gardner was our guest Wednesday morning on News5 Today. He'll be in Pueblo on Friday for a town hall.
"I know there's a tendency by some to immediately jump into the debate over gun control, but we have constitutional rights that we have to protect," Sen. Gardner said. "I don't believe that's the right answer."
Gardner said he wants to wait for more information surrounding the shooting to come out.
"Let's get the facts, let's find out exactly what happened, let's have a discussion about this. But I don't believe gun control is the solution. I don't believe trampling on constitutional rights is the right answer." Gardner said. "We have to make sure we're protecting the rights of every American. Let's have a discussion about what we can do to prevent this kind of thing from happening."
Senate democrats introduced legislation Wednesday morning calling to outlaw "bump stocks" which were found on several of the Las Vegas shooter's rifles, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire faster.
Gardner has not yet released his position on that particular bill.
Sen. Gardner also came out in support of the president's new proposal to reform the tax code.
The proposal, which has been heavily criticized by democrats, would cut the number of individual tax brackets from seven to three, cut the corporate tax rate, double the standard deductions for married couples, eliminate the estate tax and aims to simplify the tax filing process.
Gardner said the plan will benefit Colorado families.
"For the past several years, American families have seen their wages stay stagnant, perhaps even gone down," Gardner said. "With tax relief, with reforms making our system simpler, fairer, easier to understand, taking out the burdens of a complicated system, we can actually make sure families keep more of their hard-earned dollars."
Democrats, including Colorado's other senator Michael Bennet said the tax plan will not benefit Colorado's middle class.
Bennet released a statement opposing the proposal last week:
“I'm committed to working on fiscally-responsible tax reform that will make our country more competitive and boost paychecks for workers and middle-class families,” Bennet said in a news release. “The Republican plan does not come close to meeting these standards. Its intent to lower corporate rates, create a huge new loophole, and repeal the estate tax can only mean two things: slashing taxes dramatically for the wealthy and increasing the national debt by trillions of dollars.”
Independent analysis of the tax plan showed it would bring in $2.4 trillion less in revenue over the next decade and would benefit top earners.
Wrapping up our interview, Gardner addressed the situation in North Korea, calling for more "economic and diplomatic" pressure on the nation.
"There are thousands of businesses around the globe, particularly in China, that are enabling the North Korean regime, doing business with North Korea," Gardner said. "We've got to ramp up that pressure so that they no longer have access to those businesses, those currencies, those reserves."