Senator who took over $852,000 from NRA: People in mass shootings should just 'get small'


South Dakota Sen. John Thune said it's "hard to prevent" gun violence. He also has has an "A" rating from the NRA and has received at least $852,000 in donations.

South Dakota Sen. John Thune, like so many of his fellow Republicans, is not interested in talking about real solutions to gun violence, even after the latest horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas.

Instead of being willing to talk about gun safety, his advice to future victims is to "take steps in their own lives to take precautions" and "get small."

Thune also happens to be one of the biggest beneficiaries of National Rifle Association (NRA) donations, hauling in at least $852,00 to finance his political campaigns over the years.


Before his re-election in 2016, Thune pulled in $5,000 from the NRA.

Thune told MSNBC's Hallie Jackson that "all of us want to do everything we can" to prevent mass shootings like the one in Las Vegas, but because America is an open society, "it's going to be hard to prevent anything."

"I think people are going to have to take steps in their own lives to take precautions," he continued, "to protect themselves. And in situations like that, you know, try to stay safe. As somebody said — get small."

In exchange for those donations, Thune has received a rating of "A" from the NRA, voting on its behalf multiple times in Congress.

Thune opposed the background check bill that came up for a vote in the Senate after the Sandy Hook School massacre, joining a group of 41 Republicans who voted against the legislation. Only four Republicans supported it — despite more than 90 percent of American voters supporting it.

Thune voted against background checks again in legislation that came up last year, while also voting against a bill that would have allowed the Department of Justice to ban gun sales to suspected terrorists.

Now, when one of those terrorists decided to attack innocent Americans, Thune's callous remedy is just an insult to the 59 lives lost in the latest burst of gunfire.