From the Morning Memo:

Democratic congressional hopeful Mike Derrick isn’t opposed to all trade agreements, just bad ones.

He wants to keep guns out of the hands of potential terrorists, but is critical of the SAFE Act.

And he believes that if elected to represent the 21st congressional district, he can work across the aisle.

Derrick is running against first-term Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik for the sprawling North Country House district that has been a closely watched battleground ever since President Obama nominated GOP Rep. John McHugh to become secretary of the Army in 2009.

“As an Army officer, I wasn’t judged on my political persuasion,” said Derrick, a retired colonel, in a Capital Tonight interview. “I was just judged on whether or not I could get the job done. I would approach this job in the same bipartisan way.”

When it comes to gun control, Derrick backed the proposal to ban those on the terrorist watch list from purchasing firearms — a measure that has come to the forefront after attacks in Europe and in San Bernardino and Orlando.

“That’s a common sense, middle road solution everyone should agree on,” he said. “If we don’t allow someone to get on an airplane because they pose a potential threat to that airplane, how can we allow them to buy a firearm.”

But Derrick was less enthusiastic about the SAFE Act, a package of gun control laws approved in 2013 by the state Legislature. Derrick was cautious in answering when asked about his views.

“I’m seeking a federal office,” he said. “I’m a gun owner myself, I was a pistol marksman and I support the Second Amendment.”

Among voters in the North Country, the SAFE Act has “caused a lot of turmoil” given that it was approved so quickly.

Asked if he agreed with the sentiment that it infringes on gun rights, Derrick said he agreed.

“I think in general it was poor legislation,” he said. “We need better ways to solve these problems.”

As for trade issues, Derrick is opposed to the Trans Pacific Trade Partnership, but added he could support better trade deals.

“We have suffered a series of losses of manufacturing jobs in the North Country and this would be one more step in that direction,” he said, adding, “A good trade deal would be one that’s developed in consultation with all parities. This trade deal was developed by interests from multinational companies, negotiated in secret and brought to Congress as a complete package.”