Hillary Would Erase the Second Amendment

Hillary Clinton
Hillary Would Erase the Second Amendment
Jacob Sullum
Jacob Sullum

USA – -(Ammoland.com)-  “I'm not here to repeal the Second Amendment,” Hillary Clinton promised at the Democratic National Convention last week. “I'm not here to take away your guns.”

Those disavowals were necessary because Clinton has made gun control a centerpiece of her presidential campaign, contrary to the conventional wisdom about the political risks that entails. But Clinton's assurances ring hollow, since it's pretty clear she not only does not value the individual right to keep and bear arms but does not believe it is guaranteed by the Constitution.

After Democrats' losses in the 1994 congressional elections and the 2000 presidential contest were widely blamed on their support for gun control, the party changed its platform. In 2004, Democrats promised to “protect Americans' Second Amendment right to own firearms,” while the 2008 and 2012 platforms both included this sentence: “We recognize that the individual right to bear arms is an important part of the American tradition, and we will preserve Americans' Second Amendment right to own and use firearms.”

This year Democrats erased the Second Amendment from their platform, reverting to the approach they took in 2000 and earlier. The 2016 platform mentions “the rights of responsible gun owners” but says nothing about the extent of those rights or the legal basis for them.

The Second Amendment's excision from the Democratic platform is consistent with Clinton's opinion that District of Columbia v. Heller, the 2008 case in which the Supreme Court recognized that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to armed self-defense, was “wrongly decided.” At the very least, that position means Clinton thinks the Second Amendment does not guarantee the right to use guns for self-defense in the home, since the law overturned in Heller made it impossible to exercise that right.

But Clinton's disagreement with the Supreme Court seems to go even further. In an interview last June, ABC's George Stephanopoulos pressed her to say whether “an individual's right to bear arms is a constitutional right.” She repeatedly dodged the question.

“If it is a constitutional right,” Clinton said, “then it, like every other constitutional right, is subject to reasonable regulation.” She seemed to be saying that she does not believe people have a constitutional right to firearms but that even voters who do believe that should be OK with her gun control proposals.

Those proposals provide further reason to doubt Clinton's sincerity. She wants to ban so-called assault weapons, repeal the federal law that shields gun suppliers from legal liability for criminal misuse of their products, create new categories of people who are legally disqualified from owning firearms, and extend the federal background check requirement to all gun transfers.

In other words, Clinton wants to arbitrarily restrict the kinds of guns Americans can legally buy, create a new financial threat to the industry that provides the means for armed self-defense, take away people's constitutional rights without due process, and block gun purchases by cannabis consumers, people with nonviolent felony records, and anyone who was ever forcibly treated for suicidal impulses. These are not policies that someone who takes the Second Amendment seriously would favor.

The night before Clinton promised to “work tirelessly with responsible gun owners to pass common-sense reforms,” survivors of mass shootings and relatives of people who died in them ascended the stage to make the case for those policies. Like the speeches at the Republican convention about people murdered by illegal immigrants, these presentations were long on emotion and short on logic.

Once you consider the details of those mass shootings, it is clear the policies Clinton favors would not have prevented them. Presenting these horrifying deaths as reasons to enact Clinton-style gun control is not an argument; it's a non sequitur.

According to a tweet from the Clinton campaign, this naked attempt at emotional manipulation was “the first time in #DemConvention history” that the gathering included “a full feature on the impact of gun violence.” Voters will decide whether it's the last.

Jacob Sullum is a senior editor at Reason magazine. Follow him on Twitter: @jacobsullum.

  • 37 thoughts on “Hillary Would Erase the Second Amendment

    1. I believe we can all agree that the president does not make law. However, the president does nominate Supreme Court justices. It’s up to the Senate Committee on Judiciary to approve those nominations. If we end up with RINOs like Lindsey who approve of nominating liberal justices, then we’re screwed.

      Republicans need to do what Senator Biden did to stop the Robert Bork nomination. I hope POS Hillary doesn’t win. If the Supreme Court is stacked with liberals and rule the Second Amendment right is not an individual right, then said ruling would put us on a collision course.

      1. The Supreme Court has reversed itself on many occasions. Scalia’s historical assertions in Heller and MacDonald have been examined and found to be both overstated and incorrect in those cases. If his historical reasoning was flawed, then so was his legal opinion.

        In either case, Heller and MacDonald recognized an individual right to bear arms within one’s home, but it didn’t extend that right to public places, nor did it imply that there were not compelling interests in restricting such rights through the application of registration, licensing, and time/place/manner restrictions on the exercise of the right.

    2. I am getting email notices that more comments are coming in on this thread – (because I signed up for them) but there are no more here. Anyone know why – or how to make them all show up on here? Thx, from NOT an IT geek.

    3. If the Founders had approved of a right of revolution, they would not have included the definition of treason in Article 1, Section 3 of the Constitution, nor would they have included the “Calling Forth Clause” in that document.

    4. Like someone said: Tax the bejesus outta’ them, and put the manufacturers outta’ bizness, and stop all manufacturing of powder, lead, brass, parts, scopes, holsters, anything that can be taxed WILL BE……. OUT OF BUSINESS. It can be done by regulation – IF, IF the SCOTUS doesn’t stop it. And Hillary’s SCOTUS will NOT stop it.

      All you store-front lawyers and Constitutional Experts don’t mean NUTHIN’ to the SCOTUS – which does EXACTLY as they please.

      1. @BillyBob, What you say about the SCOTUS is almost true. See Cooper v. Aaron. ” Now, here is what the SCOTUS has said about taxing a Civil Right: Murdock v. Pennsylvania (319 US 105): ‘A the government may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.”
        Now, the importance of writing these things is so that the general population will know when the SCOTUS is trying to grab power of deceive the American people. Absent our efforts, the elitist judges would have a much easier time fooling the people.

    5. Lots of BRAVADO on here..WOW, such testosterone. But there will be millions – TENS of millions who will turn in their weapons when they LOSE THE INDIVIDUAL RIGHT to have one – which WILL occur when the SCOTUS says it does. With Hillary, (as Ginsberg has already said: give us more Justices like us, and Heller will be reversed) with Hillary THAT will happen.

      Lock and Load, Bloodbath, Kick in Doors, Shoot-out at the OK Corral, etc. is pure Bravado. Sounds good – but they WILL get them, if Hillary is elected. Unless you bury them in your backyard……..

    6. Just as her JV POTUS BHO said he will not take our guns, Pant Suit is 100% correct, she will not take our guns.

      Local authorities will come and take them, just as they do in California when they find a family member was
      in a mental facility either by their own or by force.

      BATF&E illegally keeping records, as well as all the tax stamp files, Hawaii has their database, Florida as well as other states that register firearms.

    7. A vote for Crooked Hillary is a vote for Civil War. I say that because law abiding gun owners will be forced to make a choice to obey the law and turn in their so called Assault Weapons or chose to be law breakers. When that happens you will see door to door confiscation. For those who say that will never happen here I say look at what has already happened. The Globalists who’ve taken over have been testing both new recruits and re-elistments to see if they would support an order to arrest civilians who wouldn’t turn over their weapons. These tests that have been given to Servicemen started in the late 70s and have continued to this day. Face it. We have been infringed. We have been marginalized. And soon, if we dont elect Donald Trump we will be at war with our own government.

    8. I’ve been on this planet almost 65 years. It’s been a long and interesting life. If it comes, I won’t mind checking out a little early, if i get to take some tyrants with me. Saddle up, lock and load!2

          1. Good bye wild bill. Blood bath is not in my world. Do not come to my door.
            You guys are over the limit of reason.
            I will have no further discourse.
            I thought I was among reasonable people here.

            1. @JohnC, “… over the limit of reason…” ? I am what my country wanted me to be. I, and my brothers and sisters in the bond of arms, put our lives on the alter of freedom. We did what you were unwilling to do.We paid the bill for you. Now, I understand why you are so willing to disregard our Constitution and Bill of Civil Rights. You got it for free, so in your mind it is not worth much. Blood bath may not be part of your world, but it is the one that you sent us off to. I don’t know why you should complain, just because we got good at it.

    9. This is the Comment I made to The article “What the Hell is an Oath Keeper?”: “The Idea is that: We know that the Federal Government, as Ran by the Democratic Party, is trying to figure out a way to take the Second Amendment Away from the Citizens of this Country! We Know that neither Obama nor Hillary are going to knock on our Doors and Order Us to hand over Our Weapons! So who are they going to Order to do this??? You, The Police Forces of this Country! That’s who!!!!!!!!!!!!! And they will have made a Law that Requires you to do this! Now! Will You Violate the Constitution and enforce the Law? Or will you Violate the Law and Enforce the Constitution? That is the Purpose of the OATHKEEPERS!!!!!!!!!!! If you Honor your Oath to the Constitution then we’ll be Okay! If you don’t. Then we will have Millions of Dead Policeman and Millions of Dead Citizens!!!!!!!!!! I want to die of Old Age and to Never have harmed another person, much less a Policeman who I honor as much as I do Our Military! BUT IF YOU TRY TO TAKE MY GUNS, I WILL KILL YOU! NOW, Do you understand why OATHKEEPERS Are so IMPORTANT!”

      1. @Don McDougall, “… the Constitution does not grant a right to arms, but that like the rights of assembly and petition, the right to arms existed long before the Constitution. Neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence.” U.S. v. Cruikshank, at 92 US 542

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