Key Words: ‘I don’t understand why civilians need access to military weapons’ — Condoleezza Rice wants new dialogue on guns

‘I think it is time for us to have a conversation about what the right to bear arms means in the modern world.’

Condoleezza Rice

George W. Bush’s Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has urged for a “conversation” about gun rights, questioning why Americans should have access to military weapons.

“I think it is time for us to have a conversation about what the right to bear arms means in the modern world,” Rice told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt Friday. “I don’t understand why civilians need to have access to military weapons.”

Their conversation comes a little over a week after a gun attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., left 17 people dead and more than a dozen others wounded.

The accused shooter, Nikolas Cruz, 19, allegedly used an AR-15, a semi-automatic rifle he bought legally roughly a year earlier. The U.S. prohibited such firearms in 1994, but that policy expired in 2004, while the Bush administration was in the White House.

Read: Months before Florida shooting, 911 calls show a teenager in crisis

President Trump has signaled support in recent days for strengthening background checks and raising the minimum age for gun purchases, but he does not support a ban on assault weapons.

Read: Trump tells CPAC that Democrats will ‘take away your Second Amendment’

And: NRA backlash: United, Delta are latest companies to dump gun lobby promotions

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