Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) gets in a heated exchange with​ Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.)

Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) is seen in a heated exchange with Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) on March 29, 2023.

(Photo: Ellis Kim/Twitter Screengrab)

'Freaking Cowards!' Bowman Confronts GOP Colleague Face-to-Face on Gun Violence

"Republicans won't do SHIT when it comes to gun violence, but try to tell me to calm down," Rep. Jamaal Bowman wrote after a heated exchange with Republican Rep. Thomas Massie.

Democratic Rep. Jamaal Bowman vocally condemned his Republican colleagues in a hallway outside the House chamber on Wednesday, calling them "freaking cowards" and "gutless" for refusing to support basic control measures in the wake of the nation's latest mass shooting—the 130th of the year.

As Bowman railed against GOP obstructionism, saying that Republicans "won't do anything to save the lives of our children," Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) stopped to ask the New York Democrat, "What are you talking about?"

"I'm talking about gun violence!" Bowman responded.

Massie—who in 2021 posted a Christmas photo in which he and his family members are holding guns—proceeded to tout a dangerous, NRA-backed proposal that Republicans float after virtually every school shooting in the U.S.: Arming teachers. (A number of states already allow teachers to carry firearms under certain conditions.)

Bowman, a former teacher and middle school principal, derided Massie's suggestion, replying: "More guns lead to more death. Look at the data." A study published in The BMJ in 2019 found that states with more lax gun regulation—and higher rates of gun ownership—experience higher rates of mass shootings.

Watch the heated exchange between Bowman and Massie, one of the most fervent opponents of gun regulations in Congress:

Bowman later posted the exchange to his Twitter account, writing: "Republicans won't do SHIT when it comes to gun violence, but try to tell me to calm down."

"We can't calm down," he added. "People are dying every day while we wait."

There's no indication that Republicans intend to drop their opposition to popular gun control measures in the wake of the deadly shooting at a Christian elementary school in Nashville earlier this week.

"The things that have already been done have gone about as far as we're going with gun control," Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) toldCNN.

In an appearance on that same network on Tuesday, Bowman called gun violence "an American disease."

"We must vote anyone out of office who does not support a ban on assault rifles," he said. "Gun violence is the number one killer of children in America today. We have to do something about that."

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