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NRA School Task Force Director Grilled By Fox’s Chris Wallace Over Background Checks, School Safety

Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace challenged the head of the NRA’s School Shield Task Force on background checks for gun purchases as well as the NRA’s focus on just protecting schools. Wallace charged that the focus on protecting schools was shortsighted.

Asa Hutchinson, a former congressman and head of the NRA’s School Shield Task Force, reiterated the NRA’s priority of protecting schools by arming teachers or having responsible personnel on site. During Wallace’s peppering, Hutchinson appeared to stray from the NRA’s hardline on background checks while trying to focusing his answers to school safety saying that.

“You have to look at the language. I would look certainly at the gun shows and the sales that surround that in that environment. If we can make sure there’s a comprehensive check and we keep criminals from obtaining guns in that environment then those checks would seem appropriate,” Hutchinson said.

Wallace was trying to clarify if Hutchinson supports expanded background checks.

RELATED: CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Gets NRA Official To Admit: ‘Yes, Absolutely, I’m Open To Expanding Background Checks’

“I really believe that our focus should be on school safety, that is an objective that we can accomplish. It’s not that difficult to increase safety and it’s not even the most substantial cost measures that a local a school had to do,” said Asa Hutchinson, a former congressman and head of the NRA’s School Shield Task Force.

Wallace said that the just protecting schools from violence and armed attacks ignored the dangers facing people at other public places. He insisted that focusing solely on protecting places of education left young people traveling to school on a school bus vulnerable to possible attacks.

Hutchinson said the president’s efforts to curb gun violence are failing because it’s “divisive to America.”

“The wonderful Newtown parents that have gone through such an incredible tragedy, they have not even reached unity among themselves on what needs to be done because America is divided on that point,” said Hutchinson.

Watch clip below via Fox

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Garrett Quinn is the author of the Less is More blog on Boston.com and a frequent contributor to TV and radio in the Boston market. He covered the 2012 presidential campaign for Reason Magazine, particularly the campaign of Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson.