Political Animal


December 14, 2012 3:44 PM Obama Reacts, Pledges “Meaningful Action”

By Ed Kilgore

In case you weren’t in a position to see this, here’s video of President Barack Obama’s reaction to the massacre in Connecticut. If you can avoid tearing up while watching it, you’re stronger than I am.

Note the pledge to take “meaningful action” to put an end to the massacres. It would not be appropriate for him to talk about that in any detail right now (or take any questions), but it was not, I suspect, a casual remark.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • Dr. C. on December 14, 2012 4:03 PM:

    The entire time I watched this moving tribute, a violent trailer for World of Warcraft was playing on the side.

  • T2 on December 14, 2012 4:14 PM:

    there will be no meaningful action.

  • POed Lib on December 14, 2012 4:18 PM:

    I'm tired of massacres. How about you? Are they good for you, or are you tired, too?

    Are you tired of the NRA running the national political scene? Are you tired of Wayne LaPierre getting his millions from gunsucks and telling us that nothing will happen?

    Are you tired of the gunsucks and the gun culture? I'm not talking about hunters. I'm talking about morons who shoot their grandchildren at the back door.

    I'm talking gunsuck here.

  • sjw on December 14, 2012 4:21 PM:

    The time for "meaningful action" is now, today, not tomorrow or next week; the longer you wait, the less likely that anything will get done. If I were president I would propose legislation today on automatic weapons and call - demand -- that Congress act on it immediately. And if I were Reid or Pelosi or Schumer I'd be pounding the Republicans on this issue right now too, because a gun in the hands of every American is the logical consequence of Republican policies.

  • JR on December 14, 2012 4:21 PM:

    If nothing is at least attempted, we have little to no moral authority in the world. Once I realized that not one child survived, I thought: We hear these stories when the Taliban attacks girls' schools. Here, it sounds like an entire kindergarten class was massacred. In what craven mind can this be acceptable or excusable?

  • Robert Abbott on December 14, 2012 4:33 PM:

    Does Wayne LaPierre really want to sound off about gun rights in the face of this monstrosity? We have to get all the soccer moms in the country to weigh in on this. It is their children, after all, who the NRA is willingly sacrificing on the altar of absolutist gun rights. Soccer moms have to rise up and put these nuts in their place.

  • LaFollette Progressive on December 14, 2012 4:40 PM:

    "...there will be no meaningful action."

    I'm as cynical as they come, but I think a line has finally been crossed for a lot of people in this country. Kindergartners for Christ's sake! What are they going to do... argue that kindergarten teachers should all be packing heat? Insult tiny children for not tackling a full-grown man and stopping him? The NRA talking points are political suicide on this one.

    I don't know if the political actions taken as a result of this will actually accomplish anything meaningful, but I can assure you that a serious attempt will be made.

  • c u n d gulag on December 14, 2012 4:42 PM:

    Here's what the Conservative and Republican loons in this country are missing - one of the most loving, caring, smart, and empathetic Presidents in this countries history.

    President Obama can shed tears, not because these were his children, or his children's teachers, but that they were simply children and teachers!

    Wayne LaPierre, Republicans, and Conservatives, would only shed a tear if this affected them, their families, their friends, or their cronies.

    This, THIS, is the difference between the hearts and minds of Conservatives, and Liberals!

    WE, don't have to be directly affected to feel the pain of others.
    THEY don't feel pain until it affects them and theirs.

    And there, the problem lies...

  • Mimikatz on December 14, 2012 4:44 PM:

    If gun control is too hard a subject for people, then let's talk about expanding mental health services, making this a more nourishing society and racheting down the violence that pervades our society. Why is it that the same people who oppose gun control also oppose more money for mental health services? If we are going to have loose guns we need fewer loose nuts.

  • guachi on December 14, 2012 4:49 PM:

    There will be no meaningful action.

    Unless that action is to turn all schools into prisons with armed guards.

  • T on December 14, 2012 5:09 PM:

    I am a parent. I don't feel grief. I feel anger -- anger that the NRA created this situation, and the Dems have continually rolled over on this. But mostly rage at the people who promote guns. And will continue.

  • sjw on December 14, 2012 5:41 PM:

    Next NRA talking point: A Gun In Every Backpack!

  • POed Lib on December 14, 2012 6:58 PM:

    It's time for a new name.



    Are you pro-massacre or anti-massacre? Me, I'm anti-massacre.

  • bob h on December 15, 2012 6:58 AM:

    Roll the assault weapon ban into the cliff negotiations.

  • Nanuq on December 15, 2012 9:59 AM:

    "If you can avoid tearing up while watching it, you’re stronger than I am."

    NO. It is not strong to bury, blunt, or block natural human feelings.

    True strength is in feeling those feelings, expressing them appropriately, and going on.

  • gdb on December 15, 2012 1:50 PM:

    I'm with T2, PO, swg.
    As in health care, we are WAY behind the rest of the civilized world in gun control. The issue is already politicized by the NRA who have been very successful in presenting their emotional arguments to sway voters..There is every reason to use the emotional aspect of this tragedy to control gun use and access.

    The Radium Girls, Triangle Shirtwaist Girls, Metawan/Harlan County Miners, Thalidimide babies,Love Canal infants did not die or suffer entirely in vain because their heart-rendering examples were openly used to put the face of innocents on tragedies due to regulatory failures. And regulations eventually occurred in part because of the tragedies.