Washington, D.C. – -(AmmoLand.com)- You might think that with the confirmation of two pro-Second Amendment justices under President Donald Trump, that the Second Amendment is reasonably safe. Well, think again. Those who would seek to take our rights away are not going to just give up. In fact, they have a new plan to deal with a pro-Second Amendment majority on the Supreme Court.
Their plans are very simple: To pack the court – adding at least two, if not more, seats to that body. One progressive group is calling for the addition of four seats, given the uncertain health status of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg creates a new opening on the high court. Who fills those seats?
You can bet that those openings will be filled by justices who will not only rubber stamp all sorts of anti-Second Amendment laws, but ones who will also overturn rulings that have protected free speech during political campaigns and uphold Andrew Cuomo’s abuses against the NRA. It is also a safe bet that any new justice picked will be relatively young – able to serve for 30 years or more. Three decades of horrible rulings on our right to keep and bear arms. The implications are simply staggering.
The absolute worst case would be to see this packed court overturn the Heller and McDonald decisions. In essence, it would buy the nonsense that the right to keep and bear arms only applies to militias – defined as the National Guard. In Florida, a proposed ballot initiative for the 2020 election could very well be a test case for this sort of claim.
Not only does that initiative encompass a sweeping ban on semi-automatic firearms, it features a ban on any magazine holding more than seven rounds. It also bans “sniper rifles” – a term left very vague but leaving open the possibility of banning a typical bolt-action rifle. There would be a one-year “grace period” to turn them in or become a felon. Furthermore, one can lose their gun rights over two domestic abuse emergency calls. Not convictions, not arrest, merely investigations. It would not matter if you were cleared or if the calls were false alarms.
At first glance, this is the type of thing that would be very likely to be tossed out, with the court citing Heller and McDonald, at least with the current composition of the court. If President Trump replaces Ginsburg with another justice who supports the Second Amendment, it would be a foregone conclusion that we would see this stricken down. But these cases can take time to get to the Supreme Court – years even.
So, what could be today’s Supreme Court with a 5-4 pro-Second Amendment majority could be a Supreme Court with an 8-5 anti-Second Amendment majority if some of these extremists get their way. That changes the entire legal landscape. Think about Kamala Harris, or Elizabeth Warren, or some of the other anti-Second Amendment zealots already running for the Presidency – and who they might select.
What can be done to avoid this? In this, there is good news: The Supreme Court’s composition can only be changed by an act of Congress. That happens either through the House and Senate passing a bill, and the President signing it, or the House and Senate passing the bill over a veto. This means there is time, but also danger. Time is there, since the 2020 Senate map is somewhat favorable to pro-Second Amendment candidates, but if the election goes bad, the danger is that the Senate could fall into anti-Second Amendment hands.
The chance to pack the Supreme Court could lead Charles Schumer to nuke the filibuster completely if he has the majority in the Senate. In short, it would be a drastic shift in the landscape – one from which the Second Amendment would not likely recover from.
The fact is, control of the White House and Senate over the next 12 years could very well decide whether or not the Second Amendment survives. It is best to make sure that they are controlled by pro-Second Amendment officials.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.