Gov. Whitmer says she is open to banning assault weapons, expanding tobacco tax to vaping products

In part two of a 1-on-1 interview at her Lansing residence, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said she is open to a ban on assault weapons – in addition to several other changes. 

There used to be a federal ban on assault weapons, but it expired in 2004 due to a 10-year "sunset clause." Now, states have to grapple with the issue themselves. With democrats controlling the legislature, lawmakers passed three gun safety bills that Republicans refused to debate. However, there was not one word of debate over an assault weapons ban.

During the interview, Whitmer reveled she believes in such a ban in order to save lives.

Whitmer: "I do think that weapons of war do not make sense for sale to the average person in the public. I do have a problem with that and I would be very open to having that dialogue."

Tim Skubick: "But having a conversation, you and I both know, is not the same as the governor saying, ‘we need to do this.’"

Whitmer: "Personally, I think it would be the right thing to do."

On another front to save lives, Whitmer said she is also open to expanding the state's current tobacco tax on cigarettes to e-cigarettes and vaping products. 

Whitmer: "I'm not leading with that… but if it's something the legislature wanted to send to my desk, I'd have a conversation with them about it. I'm open to it."

The governor added that she is waiting on lawmakers to send her a bill that would restore benefits to catastrophic car accident victims – many of whom lost critical long term medical care benefits when lawmakers changed the new fault car insurance law.

Whitmer is promising a fix. 

Skubick: "You think you will get that done?"

Whitmer: "I do."

The full interview with the governor is set to air Friday on


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