Domestic policy expert suggests holding gun control debate at local level

Policy expert Ryan Streeter said in an interview that aired Thursday on Hill.TV that it might be worth having the gun control debate at a more local level in the U.S. to combat gun violence. 

"I think that there is a problem in having this debate as a national debate," Streeter, director of domestic policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on "What America's Thinking." 

"I think it's healthy to be having this debate, but when you look at what people support, Republicans as well as Democrats, they support certain common-sense restrictions on things," he continued. 

"Because of our unique situation as a country with a Second Amendment, but also a desire to have some protections, it's very difficult in this environment to find agreement in terms of national policy."

Streeter weighed in on efforts to curtail gun violence as lawmakers and activists on Thursday commemorated the one-year anniversary of the shooting at a high school in Parkland, Fla., that left 17 students and faculty members dead.

The shooting helped spur the March for Our Lives movement, which has pressed lawmakers at the state and federal level to enact stricter gun control policies that advocates have called for following numerous mass shootings in recent years.

Streeter said that like other issues such as community policing, gun reform could be tackled more effectively at the local level.

"Much like success in other domestic reforms, whether it's been schools, or whether it's been it's been community policing, or whatever, where you had states and localities actually finding solutions to this stuff that then got replicated from state to state," he said. "I think that there is just a lot that can be done at the state and municipal level in terms of advances here." 


— Julia Manchester