WATCH: Feinstein Smacks Down Cruz Over Gun Ban: “I Am Not a 6th-Grader”

On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the so-called assault weapons ban on a party-line vote, paving the way for the full chamber to vote on the measure as early as next week. But not before Sen. Ted Cruz, the freshman Republican from Texas, aimed to give Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the five-term Democrat from California, a lesson about the Bill of Rights. He suggested that it was a slippery slope from banning bazookas to banning books. Feinstein was not impressed. Watch:

Here’s the text of some of Feinstein’s remarks:

Let me just make a couple points in response. One: I’m not a sixth-grader. Senator, I’ve been on this committee for 20 years. I was a mayor for nine years. I walked in and I saw people shot. I’ve looked at bodies that have been shot with these weapons. I’ve seen the bullets that implode. In Sandy Hook, youngsters were dismembered. Look, there were other weapons. I’m not a lawyer, but in 20 years I’ve been up close and personal to the Constitution. I have great respect for it. This doesn’t mean that weapons of war—and the Heller decision clearly points out three exceptions, two of which are pertinent here—and so I, you know, it’s fine you want to lecture me on the Constitution. I appreciate it. Just know that I’ve been here for a long time. I’ve passed on a number of bills. I’ve studied the Constitution myself. I am reasonably well educated… Incidentally, this does not prohibit—you use the word “prohibit”—it exempts two thousand two hundred and seventy one weapons. Isn’t that enough for the people of the United States? Do they need a bazooka?

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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