A Detroit autoworker on Wednesday recounted his viral exchange a day earlier with Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden over gun control.
In an appearance on Fox News, Jerry Wayne described Biden as having gone “off the deep end” during their confrontation at a Fiat Chrysler plant.
“Yeah, I thought I was pretty articulate and respectful,” Wayne told the hosts of the “Fox & Friends” morning show. “I didn’t try to raise any feathers, and he kind of just went off the deep end.”
According to Wayne, he learned on Tuesday morning that Biden would be appearing at the plant as he campaigned ahead of the Michigan primary. Wayne said he did not expect to meet the candidate, but he thought about what he would say if given an opportunity.
When Biden made his way into Wayne’s part of the plant, the autoworker said he first asked about employment prospects in the industry. Guns then came up, he said, because many of his coworkers own them.
“I also asked him how he wanted to get the vote of the working man when a lot of us, we wield arms. We bear arms and we like to do that. And if he wants to give us work and take our guns, I don’t see how he is going to get the same vote,” Wayne told the “Fox & Friends” hosts.
Autoworker Jerry Wayne is alright. This guy gets it!
"He doesn't need to be touching anybody's weapon at all, we need to concentrate on teaching people how to respect firearms and how to use them"
— the conservador (@theconservador) March 11, 2020
When Jerry Wayne clashed with Joe Biden
In footage of Wayne’s clash with Biden that made the rounds online, the hard-hatted autoworker can be heard over the sound of machines saying, “You are actively trying to infringe our Second Amendment rights and take away our guns.”
“Horsh–,” Biden responds. “I support the Second Amendment.”
Biden goes on to say that he owns shotguns and his sons hunt.
“But guess what? I’m not allowed to own [just] any weapon,” he says. “I’m not taking your gun away, at all. Do you need 100 rounds?”
When Wayne says, “You’re working for me,” Biden fires back, “Give me a break, man. Don’t be such a horse’s ass.”
The candidate, jabbing his finger in Wayne’s face, then compares AR-15s to machine guns and suggests they should both be equally illegal.
Wayne later questions why Biden is targeting semiautomatic weapons, which account for a small fraction of gun deaths in the United States. At that point, Biden’s minders finally separate the two men.
During the interview with Wayne, the “Fox & Friends” hosts played two videos of Biden advocating gun control in the past.
In one clip, from last August, CNN’s Anderson Cooper asks Biden if he planned to take away people’s guns as president.
“Bingo, you’re right if you have an assault weapon,” Biden replies.
CNN's Anderson Cooper asked Biden: "To gun owners out there who say, well, a Biden Administration means they're going to come for my guns…"
Biden replied, "Bingo, you're right, if you have an assault weapon." pic.twitter.com/fvo66HCQ1O
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) March 10, 2020
In the other clip, from Biden’s “Super Tuesday” last week in Los Angeles, the candidate is seen promising a cheering crowd he would put former Texas Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke in charge of his gun-control policy.
The politics of gun control
During his brief bid for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination last fall, O’Rourke endorsed the confiscation of “assault weapons.”
Biden, 77, has pledged to ban “assault weapons” as president. His gun-control proposal also calls for banning online sales and repealing a law that gives firearms makers special protections against civil liability.
Wayne told the “Fox & Friends” hosts he was troubled by the videos of Biden.
“It was a little bit disturbing to see that a politician wants to take away my right to defend myself,” he said. “He doesn’t need to touch anybody’s weapon at all. What we need to do is we need to concentrate on teaching people how to respect firearms and how to use them – not take them away.”
On Tuesday night, Biden was named the winner of the Michigan’s Democratic primary. He also won Missouri, Idaho and Mississippi with overwhelming support from African-Americans and a wide margin among suburban and rural white voters.
The results put Biden in a commanding position in what has effectively become a two-way race with Sen. Bernie Sanders, a Vermont Independent.
Sanders, 78, scored a victory in North Dakota, while the last state, Washington, remained too close to call on Wednesday with more than two-thirds of the votes counted.