Two weeks after Sen. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.) said she didn't think strengthening background checks on gun purchases would "be acceptable in the state of Wyoming," she revealed that her constituents have "surprised" her.
Lummis told CNN on Tuesday that since the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, which left 19 children and two teachers dead, her office has received an influx of calls from Wyoming residents who want something to be done to prevent future massacres. "I've been a little surprised at the phone calls we've been getting and how receptive Wyoming callers seem to be to address guns in some manner," she said.
Prior to becoming a senator, Lummis served four terms in the U.S. House, where she was a founding member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus. She has boasted of her "lifetime A-plus rating" from the National Rifle Association, and while she is "of the opinion that it's more of a mental health issue than a gun issue," she told CNN, "I'm listening to what people from Wyoming are saying."
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Most of those calling "have weighed in, not with particular solutions that they support, but with a willingness to be open to suggestions," Lummis said. "They're worried in large about, as I've said, the mental health issue, and Wyoming has the highest suicide rate in the nation." The state's gun culture is "strongly pro-hunting and is deeply ingrained in our social fabric," Lummis continued, but after hearing from constituents, she is considering voting for a package that would make it so juvenile criminal records are part of gun background checks.
"That's something that I'd be inclined to want to look at," she said. "So many juvenile records seem to be expunged and the clock is set back to zero the day they turn 18. So I think that is something worth considering shortly." A bipartisan group of senators is still working on gun legislation, and Lummis told CNN it is "too soon to tell" whether or not she will vote for any package that makes it to the Senate floor.
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