At the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun violence Wednesday, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and David Kopel, a law professor at Denver University, argued over what limitations are needed on gun magazines.
"If you can rationalize a 100-round drum that someone can strap onto a semi-automatic weapon, as it did in Aurora, Colo., and turn it loose, killing dozens of people there and saving lives only because it jammed, then you certainly ought to object to the laws that have been on the books for 80 years about machine guns. Why aren't they allowed under the Second Amendment?" Durbin said.
Kopel responded that machine guns aren't allowed because they are not "commonly used by law-abiding citizens for legitimate purposes."
"But 100-round magazines are?" Durbin said.
"You're the one who wants to talk about 100-round magazines," Kopel said. "And thank goodness he had a piece of junk like that that jammed, instead of something better made, where he could have killed more people with it."
Later, responding to a question from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on whether a limit on magazine size is unconstitutional, Kopel said that limit a clip to 10 rounds is "plainly unconstitutional" because semi-automatic handguns with 19-round magazines are commonly used.