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Dick Durbin: ‘Every Senator’ might face ‘their own Highland Park’ without gun reform

Senators should brace themselves for shooting tragedies in their states if Congress does not work to create meaningful gun legislation, Sen. Dick Durbin has warned. 

“Ultimately, every Senator, sadly, every Senator has to face the prospect they’ll have their own Highland Park before this is over,” Durbin, D-Ill., said during an appearance on Fox News Sunday. 

Durbin, who serves as Senate Democratic whip, has called for greater restrictions on purchasing assault weapons after the shooting at the July 4th parade in Highland Park. A gunman opened fire from a roof at around 10:14 a.m., just minutes into the parade, killing seven people and wounding dozens of others. 

Durbin recounted some of the “sad things” that happened as a result of the shooting, such as a father dying while shielding his two-year-old from the attack and an eight-year-old who was hit and might not walk again. 

“When people and families bring out their kids for a Fourth of July parade that some killer can take a military style weapon and fire off 90 rounds into a crowd of innocent people and killing so many of them?” Durbin said. “I just don’t think that’s consistent with America’s values or its Constitution.”

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A legally purchased “high-powered rifle” was recovered from the scene. Crimo allegedly fled in women’s clothes to conceal his facial tattoos and identity, Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli said. 

Empty chairs sit along the sidewalk after parade-goers fled Highland Park's Fourth of July parade after shots were fired, Monday. 

He was arrested about eight hours later after a police officer spotted the vehicle he was driving. 

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The senator sidestepped questions about the suspect, identified by police as Robert Crimo III, avoiding red flag laws in Illinois, instead trying to argue that providing more weapons to people “hasn’t made us safer as a nation.”

“We’ve had over 300 mass shootings this year,” he argued. “I didn’t know when we took this Fourth of July break that Illinois and my state would be touched personally as it has been in Highland Park.”

In response to a question about passing legislation to codify abortion rights and access, Durbin said he supported “exceptions” to the filibuster rule, explaining he believed it necessary when dealing with “voting rights and other issues.”

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