Kentucky Congressman Brett Guthrie says a number of actions can be taken to improve school safety without banning assault-style weapons.
The Republican lawmaker held a town hall in Bowling Green on Monday dubbed "A Conversation With Constituents."
The event drew a small, but passionate crowd frustrated by Congress’ inaction on gun control. Congressman Guthrie said he thinks the most effective response to school shootings is adding resource officers in every school.
"If people go into schools, if they illegally walk into schools with a gun, they know no one else in there has one unless it's a resource officer," Guthrie told WKU Public Radio. "When you have a sign that says, 'This is a gun-free zone,' and then someone walks in with a gun, they know it's a gun-free zone."
Rep. Guthrie suggested there's a need to strengthen background checks and take a stronger look at the role mental health plays in gun violence. The GOP lawmaker from Warren County said he would also be in favor of raising the minimum age for gun purchases from 18 to 21.
Congressman Guthrie said he also supports a ban on bump stocks, a gun accessory that allows semi-automatic weapons to shoot in rapid succession like automatic firearms. Guthrie stopped short of endorsing a ban on military-grade weapons.
Representative Guthrie’s town hall came just days after Kentucky students marched with thousands of their peers across the country to call for tighter gun laws.
With Congress on a two-week recess, Representative Guthrie is holding town halls across Kentucky’s 2nd District. Other public events are scheduled for next week in Radcliff, Danville, and Owensboro.