Where the Front-runner stands: Trump pledges nationwide concealed carry
Although the mainstream media would like you to believe he hasn’t put out any actual polices, earlier this week Donald Trump pledged his support for nationwide conceal carry.
Trump’s 2nd amendment policy plan, titled “Protecting our Second Amendment rights will make America great again”, proposes a “National Right to Carry” law – something I would argue already exists under the second amendment, but hey, at least we have some candidates finally acknowledging our right to carry.
In his policy plan Trump says, “The right of self-defense doesn’t stop at the end of your driveway. That’s why I have a concealed carry permit and why tens of millions of Americans do too. That permit should be valid in all 50 states.”
While I’m glad to see Trump has become more pro-gun over the years, it does concern me that back in 2000, when he released his book, The America We Deserve, he wrote, “Republicans walk the NRA line and refuse even limited restrictions. I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I also support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun.”
Since he wrote those words in 2000, he has distanced himself from those remarks. In his current policy paper he wrote:
“Gun and magazine bans are a total failure. That’s been proven every time it’s been tried. Opponents of gun rights try to come up with scary sounding phrases like “assault weapons”, “military-style weapons” and “high capacity magazines” to confuse people. What they’re really talking about are popular semi-automatic rifles and standard magazines that are owned by tens of millions of Americans. Law-abiding people should be allowed to own the firearm of their choice. The government has no business dictating what types of firearms good, honest people are allowed to own.”
Where do the Republican Candidates stand on Gun Rights?
Unfortunately, the Mainstream Media has done a horrible job covering where any of these Republican Candidates really stand on the issues, especially on guns. Fortunately, the U.K. Telegraph did a pretty good job finding out which of the original 17 candidates even own a firearm – something that at least gives you some idea on where they stand.
Of the 17 candidates, only three didn’t own a gun — former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and Carly Fiorina, though her husband owns several. For me, this automatically makes anything the three of them say on this issue meaningless — except possibly Fiorina since she does have guns in her home. Frankly, I’m pretty sick of seeing establishment candidates like Jeb Bush stand up in front of the NRA and get a pass. If you’re not a gun owner, then stop pretending to be part of that community.
Jeb Bush: Although he earned an A+ rating from the National Rifle Association, Jeb Bush is one of the only Republican candidates who does not own a gun. Frankly, I think the NRA is playing politics, which is a shame because they should really stick to supporting strong 2nd amendment candidates instead of establishment Republicans who don’t even own a gun.
Bush recently made some controversial remarks on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, where he stated that each state had the right to do whatever they wanted with their gun laws – something that flies right in the face of the 2nd amendment. This is one right that the States do not have under the Constitution; maybe Mr. Bush doesn’t understand the part that reads “SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.”
Ted Cruz: Cruz owns a .357 Magnum revolver and a Beretta Silver Pigeon II hunting shotgun. He has been a longtime supporter of the 2nd Amendment, and has been on the winning side of two landmark pro-gun Supreme Court cases when he was solicitor general of Texas.
Cruz recently gained the endorsement of Gun Owners of America, because of his”“willingness to fight for our Second Amendment rights.” It’s obvious that Senator Cruz follows the Constitution, not a political party,” Tim Macy, chairman of the GOA political action committee, said in a statement.
Mike Huckabee: Huckabee owns a number of guns. He claims he bought his first firearm, a .22 rifle, when he was nine years-old. He was the first American Governor with a conceal carry permit, and is an avid hunter.
In his most recent book God, Guns, Grits and Gravy he wrote that “in the world that I come from and choose to live in, ‘gun control’ means that you hit the target”.
Rand Paul: Paul is a gun owner, and has been an avid defender of the 2nd amendment. In fact, he seems to be even more pro-second amendment than the NRA –who didn’t invite him to their latest convention because of this support for the group Gun Owners of America, a pro-gun group that bills itself as a more conservative alternative to the NRA.
Both Rand and Ron Paul have been long-time supporters of Gun Owners of America, who have a Ron Paul Quote in the header of their website that reads, “The only no-compromise gun lobby in Washington.”
Carly Fiorina: Although not a gun owner herself, her husband does own a number of firearms. In a message prepared for NRA members, she said the 2nd amendment is not about hunting, skeet-shooting or even protecting yourself from an intruder. She said she supports the 2nd amendment because it is our “God-given right and our Constitutional right.”
While that prepared speech sounds nice, it seems Carly Fiorina has supported some pretty radical anti-gunners in the past, including Hillary Clinton and Jesse Jackson. In fact, Fiorina even donated money to Hillary while she was at HP. In a 2008 People Magazine interview, Fiorina said of Clinton, “She’s smart, she’s hardworking, she’s giving it all she’s got.”
Rick Santorum: Santorum owns a number of firearms and has a pretty good voting history on firearms. That being said, he has supported background checks on private sales at gun shows and trigger lock legislation.
Bobby Jindal: Jindal is a supporter of the 2nd amendment but doesn’t have enough of a voting record to really judge what he would do as President.
Marco Rubio: Rubio says he owns a Taurus .357 Magnum revolver and shoots about 2-3 times a year. That being said, he didn’t buy the gun until he ran for senate in 2010, and his record has been pretty sketchy.
Although the NRA has given him an A rating, back when he was running for the Senate in Florida he said he supported “reasonable restrictions” on guns, including background checks and waiting periods. He also refused to support a Florida measure that would have allowed employees to carry at work. He also voted for a gun ban while he was a commissioner in West Miami City. Although he continues to deny it, video footage has emerged showing the actual vote from the March 3, 1999 commission meeting that clearly shows Rubio voting for the Gun Ban.
Donald Trump: We know Trump owns a handgun and has a valid conceal carry permit, but beyond that we are not really sure. In an Interview with NBC, he told a reporter that it was none of her business when she tried to press him on what kind of gun he owned. The rest of his record is covered at the beginning of this article, including a link to his current campaign policy plan.
Lindsey Graham: Graham is a gun owner with a pretty good record of support on gun issues. That being said, his insistence on working with anti-gun Democrats and turning his back on Conservatives is something that should raise alarm bells. He helped President Obama confirm a number of radical anti-gunners, including Leftist Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.
Ben Carson: While Ben Carson claims to be “extremely pro-second amendment,” his past comments suggest he is hardly an avid supporter of 2nd amendment rights. In a 2013 interview, Carson said that your ability to own a gun should be based on where you live. During that interview he said, “It depends on where you live. I think if you live in the midst of a lot of people, and I’m afraid that that semi-automatic weapon is going to fall into the hands of a crazy person, I would rather you not have it. If you live out in the country somewhere by yourself, I have no problem.”
Republican Candidates with Horrible records when it comes to supporting the 2nd Amendment.
John Kasich: Although his campaign would like you to believe he is a strong supporter of gun owner’s rights, Kasich voted for Bill Clinton’s 1994 “ban” on so-called assault weapons.
Chris Christie: As Governor of New Jersey, Christie helped push through a number of gun control measures, supported strict laws against concealed weapons, and opposed the “right-to-carry reciprocity” bill — a bill that would have allowed anyone with a valid permit to carry in their home state the same right in any other state.
George Pataki: Pataki signed numerous pieces of anti-gun legislation as Governor of New York, including bans on semi-automatic rifles, bans on standard capacity magazines, a law that raised the legal age of gun purchases from 18 to 21, and a bill that required a record of each gun’s ballistics.