(CNN) — Bernie Sanders on Monday was praised from an unlikely source: The National Rifle Association.
The NRA tweeted that Sanders was “spot-on” when, in a contentious exchange during CNN’s Democratic presidential debate in Flint, Michigan, he defended his position favoring protection of gun manufacturers from legal liability over the use of their products.
“Sen. Sanders was spot-on in his comments about gun manufacturer liability/PLCAA,” the organization wrote, linking to a story explaining the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) and Sanders’ support for it.
At the debate, CNN’s Anderson Cooper asked Sanders and Hillary Clinton whether they agreed with the families of Sandy Hook victims moving to sue Remington, which manufactured the weapon used in the massacre.
Sanders explained his position, saying he disagrees with holding the manufacturers of firearms legally liable.
“If they are selling a product to a person who buys it legally, what you’re really talking about is ending gun manufacturing in America. I don’t agree with that,” he said.
Clinton, though, disagreed, saying, “No other industry in America has absolute immunity.”
Clinton’s campaign aides were quick to highlight that the NRA was trumpeting Sanders’ comments, including Jesse Lehrich, who tweeted, “this about sums it up.”
Gun control has been one of the more contentious topics in the Democratic primary. Clinton has repeatedly tried to portray Sanders — who has a record of moderation on the subject — as soft on an issue that is increasingly animating Democrats in 2016, and has sought to link him to the NRA, which is unpopular with liberal voters.