Via the Free Beacon, the clip below contains mostly standard-issue Democratic talking points, impervious to the reality that the expiration of the AWB in 2004 did next to nothing to increase rates of gun-related violence. This point got my attention, though:
She also invoked the Sandy Hook school shooting, and she suggested lawmakers should have been forced in a locked room to look at the autopsy photographs and then allowed vote their conscience. In that shooting, 20 elementary school children and six adult staffers were killed.
“Here’s what I think. I think that somebody should have required—and this is going to sound very harsh. I think somebody should have required all those members of Congress to go in a room, in a locked room, no press, nobody else, and look at the autopsy photographs of those babies,” Harris said. “And then you vote your conscience.”
Various righties responded on social media that a mandatory “stare at photos of dead babies before you vote” rule might not work out for the left on abortion regulations. (I’m guessing Harris is also a firm no on “forced ultrasound” laws for abortion clinics.) She’s showing her prosecutorial instinct here, though. Any good D.A. will try to get crime-scene photos before the jury, the gorier the better. An emotional juror is a vengeful juror, one more inclined in the heat of passion to overlook other considerations. There’s even a rule of evidence that empowers judges to limit the ability of lawyers to introduce material at trial that might inflame a jury — although as Harris would note, that rule only applies to evidence that’s “unfairly prejudicial.” Asking Congress to look at children’s autopsy photos is surely prejudicial. But is it unfair?
I’d answer that this way. Imagine — and I know this is far-fetched — several passenger jets are hijacked by terrorists and flown into U.S. office towers. The next day Trump comes bouncing down the stairs at the White House and calls on Congress to hand him sweeping new authority in the name of national security. “Look at the photos of the bodies in the streets before you vote,” he says. “Watch the people jumping off the roof to avoid burning to death.” Prejudicial, sure — but not unfairly prejudicial. How do you suppose progressive darling Kamala Harris would vote on the F*** Civil Liberties Enabling Act of 2019?
See, I think she’d vote no, on the very reasonable grounds that legislation that would restrict people’s rights shouldn’t be passed in the heat of an emotional moment, if it’s to be passed at all. She might even add a flourish about the “world’s greatest deliberative body,” the “cooling saucer” of the people’s passions, yadda yadda. We don’t even need to reach for a hypothetical, really. Half of Trump’s rhetoric about the “emergency” at the border involves dire warnings about crime, lurid portraits of women being trafficked, and of course occasional photo ops with families whose members were killed by illegal immigrants. If Congress needs to go in a room and look at autopsy photos from Sandy Hook, why shouldn’t Harris have to look at autopsy photos of Americans murdered by illegals? Vote your conscience on the wall, Kamala.
Here’s the clip, in which she also references Gabby Giffords — but not Steve Scalise, as the Beacon notices.