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January 27th, 2014
10:52 PM ET

Piers Morgan welcomes the senator who used his name in a pro-gun bill

Four days since drafting and pushing a piece of legislature named in honor – or, perhaps, in contempt – of Piers Morgan, on Monday evening Nathan Dahm joined the British television presenter's program to explain his motivation.

At the core of Senator Dahm's bill, which he's calling the “Piers Morgan Constitutional Right to Keep and Bear Arms Without Infringement Act”, is the notion that firearms should be more easily attainable, an idea that stands in direct contrast to the beliefs of the host.

To illustrate his position, Morgan rolled video of a grieving father, in which a man who lost his son in the Newtown school shooting stated that the right to life supersedes the right to carry a military style assault weapons. Seated squarely on "The Grill," the program's signature interview segment, the politician from Oklahoma was forced the face the following inquiry from the very man he sited when creating legislation:

"He's simply putting the question out there, for other Americans, including you, to determine what is more important," said Morgan, referencing Sandy Hook father David Wheeler from the clip. "He says his son's right to life is more important."

Dahm sought a solution which might satisfy both schools of thought:

"I believe that both of them should and could coexist," he said. "We do have a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And we also do have a right to keep and bear arms. And yes, somebody should not take that right and violate somebody else's right, and take a life, and they should be punished accordingly if they do that. But you don't understand what a right is, and that's the problem here."

During the day, the Senator's website featured a promotion of the evening's upcoming segment, in which he positioned the debate as a match, complete with photos of both participants on either side of a "vs."

The host resented the ploy:

"I don't need to be told about guns, or how they're used, or when they are important to be used," said Morgan. "What part of a well regulated militia allows you to put this bill out using my name to get yourself some cheap publicity, and sort of make a mockery of the whole thing, what part allows you to say that Oklahomans should all just be able to be armed to the teeth in the streets, with no licensing or background checks and that constitutes somehow a well regulated militia as laid down by your founding fathers?"

Dahm denied the stunt, but did explain what the militia consists of in Oklahoma:

"First of all, I'm not here to get attention for myself. I'm here to get attention on the issue," he said. "The militia is made up of three parts: the Oklahoma National Guard, the Oklahoma State Guard, and the unorganized militia, which is every able bodied citizen between the age of 18 and 69."

Watch the clip for more of Morgan's interview with Dahm, the man looking to pass legislation "that will strengthen Second Amendment rights," and for the next edition of "Piers Morgan Live," watch CNN every night at 9.
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Filed under: The Grill
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. max

    the one thing that was said I hope ever one walks away with. when the senator told Morgan, Morgan didn't understand what a right was. He is from a country where they still have classes, and rights are not what you think were right's. He thinks like most Kings do keep the people from reading and they will never stand up for them self's. we never had a King and so this kind of thinking is up setting to us. But for him to say we need to class our people them that are nuts and them that are not. they have upper class lower class. so this person wishes to come here for he has picked out country to wish to live in. But he is not happy that he doesn't have the King making the rules to keep ever one save like kids. so he wishes to bring that in to our country. are rights are being taken by men like this man. we must see it. don't sign away your bill of rights.

    January 27, 2014 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jim

      England isn't run by the Queen. Its run by Parliament which is just as untrustworthy as Congress.

      January 28, 2014 at 11:22 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Jane White

    I was born in Oklahoma and still live here. I happen to live in the most liberal city in Oklahoma ~ Norman. I do NOT agree with anything Mr. Dahm had to say on your show. I can not imagine majority of Oklahomans would agree with his theory. It is difficult to be a blue girl in a red state 😉 I do always want to convey, that although liberals get out voted in Oklahoma – we do exist! I hate the giant generalization regarding Oklahoma residents... and people like Mr. Dahm who should not speak for the state don't help the situation.

    January 27, 2014 at 11:20 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rex O

      Jane, if you were to get out of the city and explore the rural parts of Ok your would understand what the senator is talking about. I know this bill will pass, just as 90% of all pro gun-related issues do in Oklahoma.

      February 11, 2014 at 11:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. tristen

    Piers got blasted on this interview. He lost control when he let the senator explain. All men between 18-69 is considered militia. In which means every able man. Piers dobt understand forcing the queens views
    Down americans throat doesn't work. Every since they lost control of their slaves wordwide they believe they can get them back mentally. His aggression with the senator got him. The senator was ready

    January 28, 2014 at 12:41 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Nathan Prophet

      Please see my replay later on – it blasts your comments out of the water.

      January 28, 2014 at 9:32 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • James

        Nathan, your comments are just plain stupid.

        February 5, 2014 at 6:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe Miglio

      It is not the Queen's view, it is the view of the civilized world.. If after 3 years Americans did not understand Piers' message, they probably never will. I am sorry to see the show closed, you were a voice of reason ...

      February 24, 2014 at 8:54 am | Report abuse | Reply
  4. jamie

    Amazing interview, Piers stayed calm despite his evident passion on the subject of guns in America. The Senator from Oklahoma was unbelievably prepared for the barrage and delivered a compelling message on exactly why Piers' interpretation/ understanding of our rights is fundamentally incorrect. One right does not usurp another.

    January 28, 2014 at 12:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Nathan Prophet

      Your argument is invalid and your statement illogical. Please see my later post on how the Senator snookered Pier's on the concept of "militia." Dahm as Dahm-nable and Piers was not prepared to call Dahm bluff on that one, so it appears as if Dahm made a good point. He did not because he misstated the definition of "militia."

      January 28, 2014 at 9:43 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Ray

        It's incredible to see such nonsense. The senator is right and in line with logic and the laws of nature, and for those who believe we have God-given rights (I call these natural rights, what we're born with until we forfeit them by committing an act of aggression against another peaceful individual). Morgan argues from many illogical standpoints. He starts off with the usual appeal to emotion. He then displays ignorance and presents a false-dichotomy. Truly absurd that anyone would walk away from listening to Morgan and not feel their intelligence has been seriously insulted by the man.

        January 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Dwight Nichols

    I Really am a STAUNCH Independant. I do not even know how to spell words right. I am not anti repuplican, I am just pro demacratic,though I know what the demacratic party "use to stand for". And tonight Peirs, some things I had to agree with the Senator. He really made GOOD sence. How do we know WHO is (crazy) or not. What is crazy. If you would of did ALL that you could do, WHAT would have kept that kid in Colorado from doing what he did? The problem is MUCH deeper. You can always contact me and I will give you the answer to LIFE. And also, leave the basketball player alone. He alright. Peace and Grace.

    January 28, 2014 at 12:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. DCBerg

    I was very impressed with Senator Dahm. His knowledge of the real issue at hand was exemplary.

    January 28, 2014 at 1:07 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Nathan Prophet

      Please see my comments later on. I think you will change your mind about Dahm if you are intellectually honest.

      January 28, 2014 at 9:33 am | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Shawn

    On the show tonight there was mention of a man who had lost his son to a shooter, and a question was posed as to whether this mans son had more of a right to his life than a person has to have a gun.

    Imagine that my wife is home alone with your children while you are out of town. She has also been battling death for years now, and has dropped to 90 lbs and would surely die in a physical encounter with an assailant breaking into the house...

    What right does anyone in this world have to tell your wife that she should not have the right to use a handgun, shotgun, AR-15, baseball bat, kitchen knife, piece of pipe, screwdriver, or anything she can possibly get her hands to defend herself and your children...

    Who is anyone, politician or otherwise, to determine whether your wife is perfectly capable of defending herself against an armed assailant in your home rolling through the door with a gun, a baseball bat, a crowbar, a knife, their bare hands, or whatever else they see fit to bring to the table? The answer is that no one has that right.

    People who die from shootings, car accidents with drunk drivers, knife attacks, fist fights, etc have just as much a right
    to live as do your wife and children. And, people have the right to defend themselves with the means they see necessary. Teach people to value life, teach people to love and care about EVERYONE, teach people to respect others..

    My wife Piers, has been battling death for years now. She has lost a great deal of muscle mass, strength, and stamina due to her illness. It makes me sick to knowing that people are out there trying to prevent my wife from having the means to defend herself and family from harm which she chooses, or any other single woman or man for that matter, that are not capable of physically defending themselves from an assailant.

    January 28, 2014 at 1:14 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Nathan Prophet

      You pose a purely rare hypotheical case. Those types of arguments of all types a can be created an infinitum. They prove nothing. Should every Ameican be allow to own a AK-47, a bazooka, a surface to air missile, a tank, etc. After all, I may be down to 70 pounds and the only thing I have to save myself is my Abrams tank, if I can crawl into it and fire its weapons.

      January 28, 2014 at 9:36 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Shawn

        It isn't obvious that if someone values life, cares for everyone, respects others, etc that they would not be using surface to air missiles, tanks, or a bazooka etc to defend themselves against a home intruder? Stating those as you intended to show that if allowed a handgun or an AR, there is no limit to what a person should have is ridiculous given the criteria I specified.

        You say the scenario is rarely "hypothtical"? Same or similiar situations can be found in the results of a single page Google search on the internet. Many of which, if not all, did not involve escalations to tanks or bazookas, which 5 minutes additional research would show aren't available for anyone to pickup ammo for without special federal permits.

        January 28, 2014 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  8. Gabe G

    this man does not represent american gun owners. none of his answers were intelligent or helped gun ownership. But it's not a surprise, because all the people on your show are so far right that it only helps the anti gun agenda. Pierce you keep having dangerous people (and this senator is a danger to Americans and gun owners) on your show. it only shows how far off the path we all are. true Americans are much smarter, have more character, and are more responsible than this. gun ownership is a tremendous responsibility and it is NOT a right that every American has. only the law-abiding have the right and integrity for gun ownership. stop hosting individuals like these. they are destroying what America stands for. of course responsible Americans are for background checks and doing everything possible to keep criminals and the mentally ill from getting any kind of weapon.

    January 28, 2014 at 1:18 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • DCBerg

      Knowing Senator Dahm, I would have to say he is definitely NOT a danger to America! Seriously!! His respect for life and the people of Oklahoma is so great he was voted into office. I have to respectfully say that you have a very uneducated opinion of our Senator!

      January 28, 2014 at 1:29 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Nathan Prophet

        Dahm is obviously a danger to himself and to others and therefore should be confined to a mental hospital under heave sedation, and prefereably given truth serum on occasion.

        January 28, 2014 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Nathan Prophet

      Very well put. I agree.

      January 28, 2014 at 9:39 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Alex

        Gee thanks Nathan, great reply

        January 29, 2014 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  9. John Tanner

    "Those who hammer their guns into plowshares will plow for those who do not" Thomas Jefferson, Third President of the United States.

    January 28, 2014 at 8:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Apollon Theodoros

    Thoughts on the failure of enacting rational firearms dissemination control.

    Pier's. There is a reason no meaningful progress has been made on the passage of firearms legislation in the United States, despite the polling data indication of public acceptance of such matters. The defining question has not been proffered.
    This question will require editorial research as to the relation of every victim of a school and or mass shooting from a selected date to the most recent incidence. The question: Have any of the victims of lethal firearms occurrences been the relatives of any persons associated with persons holding upper management levels in the firearms/related components industry? Also have any victims been relatives of any "rabid pro- Second Amendment" members of Congress?

    This question will finally reveal the depth of the emotional empathetic separation as demonstrated by some extreme ( per your definition Pier's) pro-gun guest on your show.

    Yours in anticipation
    Apollon Theodoros
    Boston, Mass.

    January 28, 2014 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Mike H

    I don't think attacking Piers because of his British ancestry is an especially good argument. Britian today is one of America's staunchest allies and has been for at least 100 years. By relying on his background and attacking him personally shows the lack of any real defense on the part of his detractors. Pier's questions were good ones and were never answered to any real degree. Is it not more important that we prevent children from being murdered in their classrooms than everyone having the ability to be armed to the teeth is the real issue. Background
    checks in the age of high capacity, readily available firearms seem's like a small price to pay for our children to be safe.

    January 28, 2014 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Talbot

      It doesn't boil down to a question of which is more important; both are non-negotiable. But arming citizens only serves to help protect our children. The one idea supports and enhances and facilitates the other. That's the entire reason so many of us are so passionate about it.

      January 28, 2014 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • Mike H

        "only serves to help protect our children" you have got to be kidding? our children are being killed everyday in this country and that is with the present amount of guns. Do you honestly believe that more guns equals less children killed? I believe you are passionate, but you have got your priorities all backwards. I would just once like to see the clear eyed gun defender speak with an equal amount of passion about our children, safe from the senseless violence caused by guns. "Armed citizens" are the one's who have been pulling the triggers or have you overlooked that small but important point? Gun's don't need defending, they are inanimate objects, children need defending and I hope you can see the difference.

        January 29, 2014 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
  12. Talbot

    I want to refrain from saying anything distasteful about Mr. Morgan here, and in fact, he seems to have been uncharacteristically civil if this clip is indicative of the whole exchange. What I will say is that Senator Dahm thoroughly outclassed him in this debate by calmly expressing the logical and legal foundation of the bill. He answered Morgan's challenges with honesty and poise and refused to engage him on the false premise that the individual right to gun ownership conflicts with the individual right to life.

    January 28, 2014 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. cr

    Piers keeps harking back to countries like Britain, that has imposed strict gun ban laws as the example to follow. While gun murders are low in Britain, what Piers doesn't point out is that Britain's overall homicide rate is higher than many of its large European neighbors. Switzerland, Germany and France are for example some of the largest gun owning nations on the planet, but yet they have overall homicide rates that are 30% lower than gun free Britain. If guns are the problem then these countries should have significantly higher homicide rates than Britain, but they don't. I think we have to look at the state of our society to find the root cause of violence, addressing the huge and growing inequality gap that exists in this nation, which is not found to the same extremes in the European countries mentioned, would go a long way to solving this problem.

    January 29, 2014 at 1:13 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Alex

    Ironically everyone is exercising the free speech amendment on the interview and this forum, yet if we changed what you were permitted to say and restricted it by the government permits and background checks everyone would go crazy. People are so self serving, I don't care if you're blue, red or from the uk, no one ever wants to look at the issue. Banning stuff won't do it, gotta change the hearts of people to change the behavior. Restricting an angry person doesn't remove the anger, banning an obnoxious bully doesn't make them less of a bully, deporting an arrogant brit won't make him less arrogant. All symptoms of the heart.

    January 29, 2014 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. MrsMC

    Piers Morgan makes me sick– has done so ever since, within 24 hours of the Sandy Hook massacre, he chose to make two dozen dead children (not to mention the liberty and safety of MILLIONS of Americans living perfectly functional lives with Asperger's) pawns to his personal agenda.

    I have been a Democrat since I turned 18 (in 1996). I've been a liberal for six or ten years more than that. I thought I always would be.

    Piers Morgan and his shameless manipulation and demonization changed all that.

    SHAME ON CNN for letting a piece of British paparazzi trash promote himself as a serious journalist.

    I will never be able to take CNN seriously again.

    January 31, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  16. O.P. TAYLOR


    January 31, 2014 at 6:49 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Gunn Sportz 2014

    How Many Armed American Citizens does it take to be defined as "The Militia" ? answer ONE
    See The Minuteman Statue ..< – 100% proof of what the 2nd amendment really means.

    February 4, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Ruth Dreyer

    Senator Duhm (oops Dahm) should consider moving to Florida. Stand your ground and backyard gun ranges are the norm! Kill and be killed should be our new state motto. C'mon FL any of you have the balls to take on the NRA? Anybody know where I can buy some body armour? GRRR

    March 1, 2014 at 11:46 am | Report abuse | Reply

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