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In the Crossfire

Carlson vs. Begala: The right to bear arms

(CNN) -- Armed and dangerous? Or just protection? Hosts Tucker Carlson and Paul Begala go one-on-one over an Ohio appeals court's decision to repeal the state's law against carrying a concealed weapon.

CARLSON: An appeals court in Ohio has decided, thankfully, that that state's law against carrying concealed weapons is unconstitutional against that state's constitution. This challenge was brought, by among other people, a private detective and a guy who was a food delivery man, who goes into tough neighborhoods and wants to carry a gun with him for self-protection.

Now if this country guarantees one thing, it seems to me, it's the right to protect yourself. You cannot in a million years defend a law that prevents people from simply carrying a gun to protect themselves. Not committing a crime, protecting themselves. How can you be against that?

BEGALA: Well like you, I'm a gun owner. But unlike you, I'm not a gun nut. You see, we ...

CARLSON: I'm not a gun nut either. I believe people ought to be able to protect themselves.

BEGALA: The states that actually have these right to carry laws have higher murder rates than the states that do not. In my home state of Texas ...

CARLSON: Is that true?


CARLSON: Because 43 states have them, Paul. Do your homework, pal. 43 states. You can't make -- there are 50 states. That means only seven don't have them. So how can states with them have a higher murder rate? Statistically meaningless.

BEGALA: Yes, but the murder rate's there. My home state of Texas ...

CARLSON: Come on.

BEGALA: ... George W. Bush, when he was our governor, signed a law to allow Texans to carry guns in churches and amusement parks. Now that's insane. If you have to carry a gun in church, you're going to the wrong church, Tucker.

CARLSON: Man, I tell everybody, "Crossfire's" not a dangerous job. Being a cable talk show host, not dangerous. But lots of people out there in the rest of the world have jobs that are dangerous.

BEGALA: So what -- should you -- looks like ...

CARLSON: And to strip them of the right to protect themselves is appalling. I can't think of a more fundamental right than that.

BEGALA: Father Miguel would have a lot more success at the collection plate if you pack a .45.

CARLSON: Now you go to a pretty rough church, it sounds like.

BEGALA: Yes, exactly.




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