In a television interview, Hillary Clinton seemed to dodge answering a question as to whether the right of individuals to own guns is protected by the U.S. Constitution.
Using the word if, as in “if” it is a constitutional right, she explained that the right would be subject to reasonable regulation by the government.
Hillary Clinton has vowed to implement some form of gun control on day one of her presidency, the Washington Examiner claimed.
Legal gun ownership has skyrocketed during the eight years of the Obama administration.
The Supreme Court will have a lot to say over what is deemed reasonable, and there is currently one vacancy that the next president will fill, given that the U.S. Senate will not take action on President Obama’s nominee. When it comes to guns or many other legal issues, a Clinton or Trump appointee will likely have a significantly different frame of reference.
The Second Amendment indicates that “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
Last Friday, Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, two gun control groups bankrolled by ex-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. Clinton has been campaigning on a gun control platform. That same day, gun control advocates wore orange to promote gun violence awareness.
The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence indicated in a statement today that “gun control is a central plank of Hillary Clinton’s campaign,” Breitbart News reported. That gun control organization, along with Americans for Responsible Solutions, endorsed the former Secretary of State earlier this year.
“Clinton has called for universal background checks that close a loophole that critics say allows criminals to buy firearms at gun shows and online without as much scrutiny. She also backed President Obama’s executive action on guns, after Congress refused to pass gun reform legislation. Gun control groups say the former first lady is the first presidential candidate in history to make their cause a top campaign issue,” The Hill explained.
In a sit-down with Hillary Clinton on ABC’s This Week, anchor George Stephanopoulos began the discussion by essentially declaring that Donald Trump was wrong in arguing that Hillary Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment.
The National Rifle Association, the primary gun rights lobby, has endorsed Trump for president.
Stephanopoulos, who is also a co-host of Good Morning America, took the handgun issue a step further, however, when he asked Clinton, “Do you believe that an individual’s right to bear arms is a constitutional right — that it’s not linked to service in a militia?”
Clinton replied as follows.
“I think that for most of our history there was a nuanced reading of the Second Amendment until the decision by the late Justice Scalia, and there was no argument until then that localities and states and the federal government had a right, as we do with every amendment, to impose reasonable regulations. So I believe we can have common sense gun safety measures, consistent with the Second Amendment. And in fact, what I have proposed is supported by 90 percent of the American people and more than 75 percent of responsible gun owners…”
In her answer, she also condemned Trump’s “fabrications” and slammed Bernie Sanders for voting for a bill that granted legal immunity to gun manufacturers. She did not provide a specific citation for the 90/75 percent stat.
In her mention of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, Clinton was referring to the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller Supreme Court case, in which the justices in a 5-4 holding determined that the Second Amendment protects an individual’s right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia and to use that weapon for traditionally lawful purposes, including self-defense within the home. The high court added that the Second Amendment can be limited to some degree, however.
PJ Media alleged that Clinton was putting forth a false premise.
“If what [Clinton] said were true, the right to own a gun for any purpose except military service would have disappeared long ago. Her referencing the Heller decision is telling, because long before Scalia was a gleam in his daddy’s eye, the Supreme Court was upholding the right of Americans to possess firearms.”
Although Stephanopoulos is seldom known for aggressively questioning Democrats, to his credit he pressed further by noting that “the Heller decision also does say there can be some restrictions, but that’s not what I asked. I said do you believe that their conclusion, that an individual’s right to bear arms is a constitutional right?”
Hillary Clinton responded in a way that appeared non-committal.
“If it is a constitutional right, then it, like every other constitutional right, is subject to reasonable regulations, and what people have done with that decision is to take it as far as they possibly can and reject what has been our history from the very beginning of the republic, where some of the earliest laws that were passed were about firearms.”
The presumptive Democrat presidential nominee also seemed to disavow her past support of a 25 percent sales tax on handguns.
This Week and GMA viewers may not be aware that before going into television, Stephanopoulos was a Bill Clinton presidential campaign operative and later the White House communications director for the Clinton administration.
About a year ago, George Stephanopoulos admitted that he failed to disclose to ABC-TV viewers his $75,000 donation to the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, a nonprofit that has become controversial.
According to Breitbart News, the recent UCLA gunman joined “a long and growing list of attackers and alleged attackers who passed background checks for their firearms as well.”
Moreover, whether you support additional gun regulations or not, gun control backers have never fully explained to the satisfaction of gun rights advocates how additional restrictions would impact most other wrongdoers, who by their career path, as it were, obtain weapons outside of normal channels.
Hillary Clinton has been protected by armed, taxpayer-funded bodyguards since becoming First Lady in 1992 and possibly before as the wife of the Arkansas governor.
[Photo by John Locher/AP Images]