Top Dems support accusation that GOP chose to 'sell weapons to ISIS'

Story highlights

  • Sen. Chris Murphy told The Washington Post Monday night that Republicans chose to "sell weapons to ISIS"
  • "It's true," said Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, when asked if he agreed with the characterization

Washington (CNN)Top Democrats on Tuesday stood by Sen. Chris Murphy and Sen. Elizabeth Warren's accusations that Republicans chose to "sell weapons to ISIS" because they opposed a pair of gun control measures Monday.

"It's true," said Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, when asked if he agreed with the characterization.
A visibly angry Murphy told The Washington Post Monday night that Republicans chose to "sell weapons to ISIS" as the gun control measure for which he had filibustered 15 hours was defeated on a party-line vote. The comment caught fire Monday night after Warren tweeted, ".@ChrisMurphyCT said it right: The @SenateGOP have decided to sell weapons to ISIS."
    And Sen. Ben Sasse, a Nebraska Republican who has emerged as one of the sharpest critics of Donald Trump, threw some heat back at the Democrats Monday night.
    "This isn't true. You know it isn't true. But that probably doesn't matter for your political purposes," Sasse tweeted.
    Sen. John McCain walked back a comment he made last week when he said President Barack Obama was "directly responsible" for the Orlando attack. But Murphy and Warren found support from the White House on Tuesday for their heated comments.
    Asked by CNN about Warren's tweet, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said he had not read the tweet but then knocked Republicans.
    "Republicans are protecting that loophole at the simple request of the (National Rifle Association). Those are facts of the situation. And again I'll leave it to Republicans to try to defend that position. I don't think it's a position that many Americans are going to have sympathy for," Earnest said. "I'll let Senator Murphy and Senator Warren describe the situation as they see it. As we see it, it is without question possible for suspected terrorists to buy guns because Republicans are protecting their ability to do so."