On the House floor Tuesday, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) called for reasonable gun control legislation in the wake of the Colorado theater massacre.
"While we are healing, we have work to do in this Congress," he said. "You see, the assault weapons ban in place for a number of years -- ten years, actually -- expired in 2004. And after the expiration of the assault weapons ban, it's been open season."
"Now I know there are people who hold the Second Amendment dear and it is established clearly in law that citizens have a right to bear arms. Beyond that, the Constitution is silent. So it leaves it up to us to address issues concerning the reasonable regulation of that right. Should we not have any regulations or should we have regulations that are reasonable?"
Last week, an armed gunman opened fire in a crowded movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, killing at least 12 and wounding 58 others. The victims range in age from 6 to 51 years old. The mass shooting has revived debate on gun control legislation.
Prominent House Democrats, including Democratic Caucus chairman Rep. John Larson (D-CT) and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MN), have called for the assault weapons ban to be renewed.
"To say that we should have no regulations on weapons, particularly weapons of mass destruction, to me is unwise," Johnson added. "I don't understand why someone who has a gun in their home for protection needs to have a 100-round magazine that is capable of rapid fire... I don't understand why someone needs that kind of firepower to protect their home."
He also said it was unnecessary to use an AK-47 to hunt for deer.
Watch video, uploaded to YouTube by Rep. Hank Johnson, below: