Rep. Seth Moulton (D., Mass.), a Democratic presidential candidate, said there should be a debate in the United States about whether ownership of handguns should be permitted during an interview with the New York Times.
The New York Times asked Moulton and other candidates whether anyone would own handguns in an ideal world.
"In an ideal world, we would not have weapons of war on our streets," Moulton began. "That's the bottom line. I'm someone who had to use guns. Every day in Iraq, I walked around with an assault rifle and a handgun at the very least. And so I've seen the destruction that guns can cause. So while I respect the Second Amendment there's no need for weapons of war on our streets or in our schools. And I'll use the credibility of someone who understands guns, who has used guns, someone who can even say guns saved my life to fight to make our communities safer."
The Times pressed Moulton for his view on handguns specifically.
"Well, look, that's a discussion we should have and a debate we should have in the United States. The fact of the matter is handguns cause a lot of deaths around the country and we can have a good debate about whether they should be allowed to be free," Moulton said.
Moulton added that assault rifles should be outlawed.
Moulton's campaign has failed to gain traction, and he did not qualify for the first Democratic debate in Miami next week.