Conservatives held President Barack Obama’s ‘feet to the fire’ during his “Fireside Hangout” on Google+ Thursday night.
During the 45 min long hangout, two conservatives took turns with three other participants grilling the President on his controversial policy proposals such as gun control and his announcement in Tuesday’s State of the Union that he would pursue a minimum wage hike.
Kira Davis, a conservative blogger, asked the president if he thought we should ban hand guns in the United States. She noted that Obama’s proposed “ban on so-called assault rifles” wouldn’t solve “the majority of deaths by gun in this country,” as more deaths in the U.S. are caused by handguns, not assault weapons each year.
“Well, I actually don’t think we should ban handguns,” Obama replied. “What we’re trying to do is come up with a package that protects Second Amendment rights. The package we will put forward will have an impact on handguns by instituting a universal background system.”
Another conservative, Lee Doren, who is a noted social media expert and a YouTube whiz, barely gave Obama a chance to take a breath before issuing his own follow-up to Davis’ original question. He pointed out that the Obama Administration’s proposed gun control package would actually take guns away from Americans despite the vice president’s claim “that people have nothing to worry about in terms of the government coming in to take away their guns.”
“Well, no, people are going to be able to buy guns, all kinds of guns,” Obama responded. “We can’t purchase a grenade launcher from a store, although there may be some folks who want to buy those. The Second Amendment does not automatically assume that any weapons available you can automatically purchase.”
Later in the hangout, Davis challenged the president on his proposal to raise the minimum wage in the United States, asking the Commander-in-Chief what impact the proposal would have “just regular people.”
“I’ve been in the situation where the minimum wage was raised and I had to let go of two employees from a non-profit because we couldnt’ afford the wages anymore,” Davis said.
She added that she was worried about what it would do to her day-to-day life, like buying coffee at Starbucks, when companies are forced to raise their prices to accommodate the new minimum wage. Obama replied by saying that”corporate profits are at record highs” and the minimum wage will only “have some modest impact on their profits.”
“My suspicion is you’ll still be able to get your Starbucks,” he promised snidely.
Davis and Doren also demanded to know what the Obama Administration could do to become more transparent.
“In 2008, you ran on a platform of really trying to become one of the most transparent administrations in American history,” Davis said. “However, with recent leaked guidelines regarding drone strikes on American citizens, and Benghazi and closed door hearings on the budget and deficit, it feels a lot less transparent than we all hoped it would be.”
Obama insisted that his administration is still “the most transparent administration in history.” He also told Davis that Benghazi was “not a good example” of its transparency and claimed that it “was largely driven by campaign stuff.”
“We’ve had more testimony and more paper provided to Congress than ever before, and Congress is sort of running out of things to ask,” he fired back.
Doren also asked Obama what he was going to do about the fact that “a lot of people are very concerned that your administration now believes it’s legal to have drone strikes on American citizens.”
“There has never been a drone strike used on an American citizens on American soil,” Obama claimed.
Watch the two conservatives grill Obama during the “Fireside Hangout.” Doren only had the chance to ask Obama two questions while Davis got to ask Obama four – three serious ones and a silly, personal question at the end.