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Klobuchar talks gun control, criminal justice at CNN town hall

The Nevada caucuses will take place on Saturday.

Hoping to build momentum off of the first two state contests, Minnesota Senator and Democratic presidential hopeful Amy Klobuchar took questions on gun control and immigration in Nevada.

At a CNN town hall Tuesday, Klobuchar was confronted by a survivor of the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting that killed 58 people. Klobuchar said she would push for gun control that wouldn’t hurt "hunters in the deer stand," like universal background checks and bans on bump stocks and high-capacity magazines.

She criticized President Donald Trump’s apparent pivot on the issue shortly after the Parkland massacre.

“As your president I will not fold,” Klobuchar said.

Klobuchar came under fire recently when both she and businessman and fellow candidate Tom Steyer were unable to name Mexican President Andrés Manuel López in a recent Telemundo interview.

At the town hall, Klobuchar attributed the lapse to a long day and late interview.

When the issue of criminal justice came up, Klobuchar stood by some of her actions as Hennepin County County Attorney, including decreasing African American incarceration rates.

"And while there were still disparities in our system, like there were any, we had still managed in the eight years to reduce the African American incarceration rate by 12 percent."

Klobuchar’s time in the office is under increased scrutiny after an Associated Press investigation found potential flaws in a murder case she tried against teen Myon Burrell, ending with a sentence of life in prison.

Nevada is a state where more than 7 percent of the population is undocumented according to 2016 Pew Research data. When Klobuchar was asked how she would approach immigration reform for minors brought to the United States as children, she said she would be able to get reforms passed despite difficulties doing so with the past two administrations.

"I think the need has become clearer and clearer," she said. "I believe if I am our candidate for president we’re going to be able to win big and win in these Senate districts in Arizona and in Colorado and make a change."

After finishing in fifth place in the Iowa Caucuses and third in the New Hampshire primary, Klobuchar received around 9 percent of support in a recent Nevada poll published in The Hill.

That puts her narrowly behind businessman Tom Steyer and in sixth overall. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is not on the Nevada ballot.

Candidates will take the debate state in Nevada on Wednesday. Ahead of the debate, Klobuchar will continue her campaign in the state by visiting a picket line with Las Vegas workers before heading to Colorado on Thursday. 

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