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Report: Gun Control Measures Could Reduce Trump’s Base Support Going Into 2020

Report: Gun Control Measures Could Reduce Trump’s Base Support Going Into 2020

“data gathered by the president’s campaign showed that supporting any gun control measures would pose a problem for him politically going into the 2020 election season”

I haven’t paid as much attention to “sharpiegate” as I might if it actually mattered.  What a ridiculous tempest over pretty much nothing.  Can you imagine if the media went this insane every time Obama said something that was questionable, demonstrably wrong, or even a simple mistake?

We’d have been treated to eight years of blanket coverage of the “57 states” Obama claimed to have visited, to endless pronunciation lessons of the word “corpsman,” articles in the hundreds wondering if someone who thinks Austrians speak “Austrian” is fit to be president, and nonstop discussion of Obama’s lies about ObamaCare (not one dime, keep your doctor/plan).

That’s not touching on any of the actual scandals that plagued his administration and have yet to receive the media attention this “sharpiegate” thing has.  So, no, I’m not really worked up about the Alabama, Hurricane Dorian, sharpie thing.  Not a smidgen.

Something that could get me worked up, however, would be Trump abandoning his campaign promises—not to mention his oath of office—to protect the Second Amendment.

I don’t think he will, but there has been a lot of hand-wringing on the right over reports and rumors that the president is considering everything from expanded background checks to red flag laws to getting Google and Amazon to help identify potentially unstable gun owners.  All of which are, to varying degrees, alarming to #2a conservatives.

Trump met with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) on Thursday to discuss legislative or policy responses to mass shootings, but according to reports, Trump has not made any decisions as yet.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

The 30-minute private meeting, which included several White House staffers, touched on a range of possible gun-related policy issues including background checks, the people said. Mr. Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat, and Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) have long urged legislation expanding background checks for gun sales. Their bill failed to pass the Senate in 2013.

“The president expressed interest in getting a result, so conversations will continue to see if there’s a way to create a reasonable background check proposal, along with other ideas,” a White House official said.

But another person familiar with the meeting said the president didn’t give Sen. Manchin a clear signal, illustrating the widespread uncertainty on Capitol Hill about what Mr. Trump might support.

. . . . Lawmakers, and even some White House officials, remain skeptical that significant gun-control legislation can win congressional approval with the 2020 election looming. Some of the president’s advisers have cautioned him against taking aggressive steps in response to the shootings, arguing that such moves could reduce support among conservatives.

The president and his aides have discussed measures to improve background checks, empower law-enforcement officials to remove guns temporarily from people deemed dangerous, boost mental-health services and subject mass shooters to the death penalty, among other things. Mr. Trump hasn’t yet endorsed specific legislation, though White House officials have said they hope to move a package through Congress.

Democrats can wail about “sharpiegate” and Access Hollywood tapes and whatever other random nothing they find to be outraged about on a given day, but what matters for the president is where his base stands on actual issues and how far they are willing to bend.  And his base is firmly on the side of the Second Amendment and will not react well to any attempt to infringe on that right.

In a separate article, the Wall Street Journal reported in mid-August:

President Trump’s public push for gun-control measures is causing consternation among conservatives and some of his advisers, who have privately raised concerns about the political and policy fallout of the approach, according to White House officials and people familiar with the discussions.

. . . . Amid the increased discussion about gun control, some Trump advisers have urged the president not to throw his support behind any of the gun-control measures being discussed in Congress, including so-called red-flag legislation introduced by top Trump ally Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.), which aims at temporarily blocking dangerous people from accessing firearms. Some advisers have expressed concern that such legislation could violate the Second Amendment and alienate conservative voters.

Donald Trump Jr., the president’s son who often speaks with his father about his views on gun laws, has raised concerns about both red-flag legislation and about tightening background checks, according to people familiar with the matter.

This is a theme that is being covered more recently, as reports suggest that Trump’s internal polling is highlighting the danger of proceeding with gun control measures, measures it should be noted that target the law-abiding and would not stop criminals from committing gun-related crimes.

ABC News reports:

As President Donald Trump has mulled acting on gun control legislation in the wake of a string of mass shootings, data gathered by the president’s campaign showed that supporting any gun control measures would pose a problem for him politically going into the 2020 election season, according to sources familiar with the results.

. . . . The sources said it’s likely to inform Trump’s decision on whether to act on any gun control legislation, despite separate nationwide polling showing widespread public support for tougher gun sale background checks.

. . . . Trump has sent contradictory messages on his stance on gun legislation since the Dayton and El Paso shootings.

On Aug. 9, Trump said he supported “very meaningful background checks.” But opposition from the N.R.A. stalled momentum on potential proposals from the White House.

In an Aug. 21 conversation with Trump, NRA head Wayne LaPierre issued caution on new gun control measures, warning that the president’s core supporters didn’t want them. Trump later said in the Oval Office “we have strong background checks now.”

“But we have sort of missing areas and areas that don’t complete the whole circle. And we’re looking at different things and I have to tell you it’s a mental problem, I said it 100 times, it’s not the gun that pulls the trigger, it’s the person that pulls the trigger.”

It seems clear that the president is conflicted.  On the one hand, he does want to address the issue of mass shootings, but on the other hand, he does not want to infringe on Americans’ Second Amendment rights.  It’s an unenviable position.

Facing reelection in 2020, Trump is wise to consult internal and other polls of his base in terms of an issue that the majority of his base does not feel is open for debate: the Second Amendment.

According to a Morning Consult/Politico survey released last month, Republican voters “support gun rights over gun control nearly 3 to 1.”

A Morning Consult/Politico survey shows that 71 percent of Republicans support protecting the right of Americans to own guns while 22 percent support passage of more gun control.

Among voters who supported Donald Trump in 2016 the gap is slightly larger, with 73 percent supporting protection of the right to own guns while only 21 percent support more gun control.

Only 71% of Republicans support protecting Americans’ right to own guns?  Seems a bit low to me.  The president is wise to be prudent in regard to any move that restricts the gun rights of law-abiding Americans.


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Guns are already over-controlled. Left to the good guys, we’d put an end to the creepers who inflict themselves against civilization.

God bless George Zimmerman.

Why not have background checks on private gun sales? I don’t get the objection.

    The Packetman in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 8:21 pm

    Because for universal background checks to actually do anything, there must be a registry of ALL firearms; no exceptions. And the history of firearm registries is not a good one …

      But we already have background check if you buy gun at a gun store. Why not for private sale also?

        Joe-dallas in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 8:44 pm

        “But we already have background check if you buy gun at a gun store. Why not for private sale also?”

        A) Because it will be near impossible to implement and operate in a useful version
        B) Individuals who plan to use guns for evil are not going to comply
        c) It is going to create and/or expand the existing national data base.
        D) It is only window dressing that will near zero effect on crime

        I personally would prefer exploring other avenues that would be much more efficient, cost effective and reliable.

          tic...tic...BOOM in reply to Joe-dallas. | September 10, 2019 at 8:30 am

          “I personally would prefer exploring other avenues that would be much more efficient, cost effective and reliable.”
          How about we do more to take the guns from the criminals rather than from law abiding citizens?
          How about we enforce the laws that are already laws against crimes in which guns are used?
          How about enforcing the laws in which a criminal who uses any gun in a crime can be sentenced to a mandatory minimum of 5 years, no parole and serve the sentence in a distant prison?

        MrMichael in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 8:54 pm

        Because, at the most basic point, criminals will not follow the law. We are not concerned with the actions of law abiding people. We are concerned with the actions of the extreme few who wish to use guns for illegal violent murders… and these extreme few have no reason to follow the law.

        Just one example… if you do a background check on a potential buyer… how would you verify their identity?

        tom_swift in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 10:39 pm

        Why not for private sale also?

        Among other things, the enormous cost. An FFL charges $25 and up for a NICS check. Nobody knows how many “private” sales there are, but it’s certainly something well north of 10 million annually. That’s a minimum of $250 million the public has to pay just to exercise a civil right, all with no showing whatsoever that it will contribute to public safety.

        A few things.

        1) The background check is not for the “sale” of a firearm. It is for the “transfer” of the firearm from a licensed gun dealer [an FFL holder] to a person not holding a FFL. A transfer does not require a sale.

        2) The liberals want to extend the required background check to all “transfers” of firearms between all persons. This would include loans and gifts.

        3) A background check restricts the RIGHT of a person to own or possess a firearm. That is its entire, stated purpose. This is a clear violation of the 2nd Amendment, which prohibits the government from infringing [restricting] the right to keep [own] and bear [possess] arms [including firearms].

        People are their own worst enemies. They keep giving away the rights that their fore bearers fought and died to gain and protect. Usually for little or no gain. They have acquiesced for decades to restrictions on their right to keep and bear arms based upon the length of the firearm, the length of the barrel, its operating system, what type of ammunition it can fire, etc. They have allowed restrictions to be placed upon where they can carry a firearm, in public. None of these restriction have made the country any safer. Every shooting in Chicago is done by a person illegally in possession of a firearm. The same is true of NYC, Baltimore and a number of other places. many of these shooting are committed by people who can not pass a NICS check. Many obtained their firearms through criminal means [theft/burglary] or from unlicensed black market dealers.

        Background checks are not only pretty much worthless, they are also unconstitutional.

        MarkS in reply to sandbox2. | September 8, 2019 at 1:52 pm

        You’re offering a solution for a non-existent problem. Universal background checks would not have prevented any mass shooting this century

      Because for universal background checks to actually do anything, there must be a registry of ALL firearms;

      That’s not true. There is nothing about background checks that requires a firearms registry. We have background checks now, for dealer sales (which is the overwhelming majority), and it works fine without any sort of firearms registry.

        jakee308 in reply to Milhouse. | September 8, 2019 at 6:17 pm

        As usual, you’re being disingenuous.
        Current background checks go thru a licensed dealer who has at the point of sale the id number of the firearm being transferred and who manufactured it, he has the id of the transferee, and they are the transferor. All with data that proves all those items.
        With a universal back ground check, the dealer has no guarantee who is the legal owner of the firearm unless there is a data base somewhere with the id of the firearm and the name of the current owner, This prevents them from stating so for the transfer.
        Thus there needs to be a database made up of all current firearms with ID and a verified owner identification. Presumably verified by a government org of some sort such as Police, Sheriff or other place where those items would be taken in and verified.
        Other wise the check would be useless.

          Milhouse in reply to jakee308. | September 9, 2019 at 1:46 am

          As usual, you’re full of sh*t. A background check is entirely about the transferee. Its only purpose is to determine whether the transferee is a person who is legally prohibited from owning firearms. Neither the transferror nor the weapon is in any way relevant. There is no weapons database now, and extending the current system to private sellers would not require any such database. It’s a bad idea for other reasons, but not for this one.

        But then, how do you enforce a check if you don’t know who has a gun today but does not have it tomorrow?

          BerettaTomcat in reply to Perfesser33. | September 8, 2019 at 7:29 pm

          And, how does the government know my firearms were obtained lawfully without a registry if universal background checks are implemented?

          Milhouse in reply to Perfesser33. | September 9, 2019 at 1:49 am

          How do you enforce any law? How is the current check enforced? And how do those states who’ve imposed it on private sellers enforce it? People (dealers or not) who want to break the law will break it. Once in a while they’ll be caught, but most of the time they won’t. Just like now. In any case there is no need at all to know who has the guns. The government’s interest in only on the transfer. Imposing checks on private sellers is a bad idea, but not for this reason.

          Milhouse in reply to Perfesser33. | September 9, 2019 at 1:52 am

          And, how does the government know my firearms were obtained lawfully without a registry if universal background checks are implemented?

          It doesn’t have to. There is nothing about universal background checks that requires the government to know how you got your firearms. If you’re a criminal it doesn’t matter how you got them, you’re committing a crime by having them. (It’s already a crime for you to buy them from a private seller, and for a private seller to knowingly sell to you. But without a check he probably doesn’t know.) And if you’re not a criminal then once again it doesn’t matter how you got them; if the seller didn’t run a check (assuming he should have) that’s his offense, not yours.

    It will lead to a registry of who owns what guns. Registry is another step to confiscation which is the end goal. And the dems don’t give a ship about Trump giving them any part of gun control. Come 2020 if they take the senate they’ll impeach him as their thank you. And I’ve written Trump and told him I’m voting for him but if he supports any gun control I’m voting for dems for house and senate to impeach him and let us get Mike Pence in his place. And I’m dead serious having not voted for a single dem since the early 80’s.

    Ask yourself why does a background check have to include the gun?
    You can either own guns or you can’t. The gun itself is unimportant.

    I could support a voluntary background check by PRIVATE parties conducting a sale with a strict and extremely punitive law stating no records will or can be kept at local, state of federal level or that government employee will serve a minimum of 20 years in federal prison plus a large fine. It should also be no cost to either party. They want it they can pay to have the system.
    We have enough infringements on the Second, it’s time we take back our freedom. The liars are doing a very good job of scaring American’s with those lies. Watched some faux news around 5:30 or 6 pm tonight. They had two guys on who lied like rugs about AR’s and other gun related things. No rebuttals from an intelligent and well informed person. Pure garbage.

      alaskabob in reply to 4fun. | September 7, 2019 at 8:44 pm

      Video out there of a woman asking Dem candidates to describe an “assault weapon”… couldn’t. The AR-15 (AR as in Armalite) has been sold by Colt since 1963… over 50 years ago and the basic design (civilian) for mag feed semi-autos with intermediate cartridges has been around for over 100 years. Why now? This issue now really started in the 1980’s when the first new generation coming out of “The Great Society” and the late 60’s could buy firearms.

      Milhouse in reply to 4fun. | September 8, 2019 at 3:57 pm

      Registry is indeed a bad thing, but it’s not a reason to oppose universal background checks. They are two distinct things, both of which are bad, but for independent reasons.

        Disagree. One requires the other to be effective.

        BerettaTomcat in reply to Milhouse. | September 8, 2019 at 7:34 pm

        If UBCs are imposed without a national registry, they will form a steep portion of the slippery slope toward such a registry.

          No, they won’t, any more than the current checks (which cover the vast majority of sales) have led to creating such a register. The records of background check requests have to be destroyed within six months, precisely to prevent them from being used to compile such a register.

        paracelsus in reply to Milhouse. | September 9, 2019 at 11:47 am

        “…universal background checks.”
        Why limit this great idea to just guns; don’t you essentially go through this whenever you apply for a mortgage?
        For that matter why not include religion? Didn’t some socialist government try that in Europe last century with very interesting results?

    alaskabob in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 8:38 pm

    Just one more layer of regulation, “registration” and cost. One more “first step”. Example in California… California gun owners who have gone through the hoops of California law including background checks have to go through the checks and 10 day waiting period every time they buy another firearm. They already own firearms and the state knows that but puts them through the same routine every time. Would I sell to or buy a firearm from someone I did not know without a background check? No. Does the background check stop criminals? No. Do BATFE and FBI have stellar credentials these days? One more thing… red flag laws… ok… takes the guns but how about the automobile, the knives… Freud was on to something about phobias about firearms.

    TX-rifraph in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 8:57 pm

    My objection is that the Democrats want to disarm the law-abiding citizens by any means necessary. I assume ANYTHING a Dem wants or agrees to is a Trojan Horse.

    redc1c4 in reply to sandbox2. | September 7, 2019 at 9:50 pm

    because it would make millions of Americans felons every year:
    i go shooting with my wife. we both own guns we purchased legally. if she shoots one of mine, or me hers, we’re guilty. and frankly, we couldn’t tell you who bought what for most of them.

    say i want to go shooting with friends, and we want to try things each other has brought. instant felons again.

    and criminals never follow laws anyway. the a55hole in Texas got turned down for a lawful purchase, so he bought a gun from someone manufacturing them illegally.

    the govt can go urinate up a rope on universal checks. i’d rather be a free felon on the run than a lawful slave.

      The problem is in the first word below:

      *IF* voluntary background checks were implemented in a sane fashion, they’d be fine.

      The immediate problem is the Left will never take an inch without wanting to take a mile and a half. The “Universal background check” legislation they’ve proposed makes it a felony to pass your gun to your hunting partner when crossing a barbed wire fence, and a second felony to take both guns back so he can cross. Same thing for loaning a friend a gun for hunting or target practice, buying a shotgun so your son can go hunting with you, or a thousand other felonies.

      They’re also pressing for ‘insurance’ provisions that are just jackpot collection mechanisms to slam anybody who owns a gun, Red Flag laws with giant open provisions to forcefully remove your guns, and a hundred other little ‘common sense gun legislation’ things.

      So no. I don’t trust them. And for darned good reason.

    Milhouse in reply to sandbox2. | September 8, 2019 at 1:42 am

    Why not have background checks on private gun sales? I don’t get the objection.

    It’s a fair question, and people are not answering it, or are giving answers that apply equally to dealer sales, which is not an answer. So here is my answer:

    The reason not to require private sellers to check a buyer’s background is that they are unable to do so. For obvious reasons the NICS doesn’t let any random person check up on anyone who strikes their fancy. You and I can’t call the NICS and satisfy our curiosity about Bill Jacobson’s background, and that’s how it should be.

    So suppose he wanted to buy a gun from one of us, and we were not allowed to sell it without running a check; what could we do? The only answer would be to find some willing FFL, and pay him whatever he felt like charging to run the check for us, which would of course raise the price we had to charge. And if we couldn’t find someone, we couldn’t do the sale.

    Some states have “solved” that problem by requiring FFLs to run checks for anyone who asks, for a fixed fee set by the state. Beside the potential for abuse, the FFLs find this to be such a burden that they’re willing to stop doing business in that state rather than comply.

    But if we were only dealing with sales, perhaps a solution could be found. Maybe we could accept the potential for abuse, and allow anyone to run up to some small number of checks a year from the NICS web site, for a low fee. Private sellers shouldn’t need more than a small number, since by definition they’re not selling a lot. If they are they need to be FFLs.

    The real sticker is non-sale transfers. The laws the Dems insist on passing require checks not just for sales, not even just for gifts, but even for loans, and even just for asking someone to hold your gun while you tie your shoes, and even within your family. I shouldn’t need to explain how unacceptable that would be.

      Let us not forget that the government is imposing background checks on FFL holders [dealers] under the commerce clause. They can justify this, to some extent, by claim that it only regulates those dealing in interstate commerce and, therefor, does not infringe upon the 2nd Amendment rights. This is the same thing that was done with regard to the Firearms Control Act of 1934 and all subsequent gun control acts. Once you seek to impose background checks upon the transfer of firearms outside the scope of interstate commerce; i.e. transfers between private individuals, not dealers; you lose the dubious protection of the commerce clause and enter the clearly defined world of violation of the 2nd Amendment.

      What has also happened is that firearms owners are reasonable people. They can concede that there are certain people who, by reason of mental illness or past violent criminal behavior, should probably not have access to firearms [you’ll notice that such people are only ever prohibited from possessing firearms, not other deadly weapons]. So, they go along with certain prohibitions. Unfortunately, this always opens the door to additional “reasonable restrictions”. And, the problem then becomes what constitutes a “reasonable restriction”. It is well past time for firearms owners to stop being “reasonable”. The 2nd Amendment clearly states that the government may not restrict the right of any person to own or possess arms, including firearms. The Constitution is a contract and people and governments are not free to ignore the provisions of that contract. The provisions can be changed, through the structured mechanism of amendment, but they can not simply be ignored.

        Milhouse in reply to Mac45. | September 8, 2019 at 4:03 pm

        Once you seek to impose background checks upon the transfer of firearms outside the scope of interstate commerce; i.e. transfers between private individuals, not dealers; you lose the dubious protection of the commerce clause and enter the clearly defined world of violation of the 2nd Amendment.

        That makes no sense. The commerce clause does not do anything to the 2nd amendment. If something violates the 2A, the commerce clause can’t help it; the only time the commerce clause comes into play is if we’ve already ruled out any 2A violation.

        And the commerce clause is not the only enumerated power Congress has; the only reason they use it so much is that they’re lazy. There are about 17 others, so if they can’t use the commerce clause they can use one of the others. In this case the militia clauses would do nicely.

          That is correct, the Commerce Clause does not provide any exemption to the language of the 2nd Amendment, hence why background checks, if they restrict a person’s right to own a firearm, are unconstitutional. What I am saying is that the federal government is using the commerce clause to justify the use of background checks. This is the same argument that they used to justify imposing tax stamps on the transfer of certain firearms and limiting the general sale of other dangerous weapons, such as explosives. That the courts keep supporting this dubious legal argument is just more evidence that justice is political, not based upon truth.

          The militia clauses are not a legally applicable argument, today, because the SCOTUS has ruled the 2nd Amendment is an individual right. And, of course, nowhere in the 2nd Amendment is the government given any authority to regulate any militia. However, it is specifically prohibited from restricting the ownership and possession of weapons by the people, now ruled to be the individual.

          Milhouse in reply to Milhouse. | September 10, 2019 at 2:47 am

          Grrrr. Mac45, the militia clauses have nothing to do with the 2nd amendment, any more than the commerce clause does. If background checks violated the 2nd amendment then nothing in the enumerated powers could save them. But so far the consensus is that they don’t.

          So the only remaining question is where Congress gets the authority to require them. The current law derives that authority from the commerce clause, just as do 99% of the laws congress makes nowadays, because it’s easy to make that claim so they never bother with any other. It’s as if the rest of the enumerated powers may as well not exist.

          But if the commerce clause won’t stretch to let Congress require (2A-safe) background checks on private sales, then Congress can rely on the militia clauses instead. Those do provide the necessary authority.

Prior to 2016 I mostly voted libertarian as that was the party that offended me the least. Hillary Clinton, for me, represented an existential threat to liberty in general and the 2A in particular so I voted for Trump. Realizing that elections are binary (it is what it is), if Trump supports ANY further gun control, I’ll be voting NOTA in 2020.

Trump should pay attention to the hole Dan Crenshaw has dug for himself in Texas …

Kneeling, nay, prostrating ourselves before criminal elements is not only a violation of a fundamental civil right to keep and bear arms… legs, a head, and life, but a transhuman choice, which is surely a double-edged scalpel.

Even if we could have an evil detector restrict things, it would never be implemented as 95% of Congress wouldn’t be let anywhere near an airport, much less on a plane.

It seems clear that the president is conflicted.

I tend to think he’s keeping the D’rats up in the air. They can’t fight him if he refuses to take a stand. For Republicans, exactly how he handles the D’rats isn’t important, as long as he does indeed handle them in the end. All just part of his job.

ScottTheEngineer | September 7, 2019 at 11:43 pm

Unfortunately all I’m seeing is the fake news media trying to upset Trumps base and it seems to be working. I haven’t heard or seen him do anything at all for or against the 2nd amendment.
I heard he was planning to ban bump stocks but not that it has actually happened. My neighbor was firing his the other day with one.
A bump stock is nothing more than a gun toy. They take a perfectly functioning well crafted piece of machinery and turn it into a non-usable noise machine. Probably fun to fire though.
The left doesn’t really care about gun control, children or the weather. They just want power.

    Ah… already one arrest and going to trial for possessing a machine gun solely because of the bump stock.

      Mike H. in reply to alaskabob. | September 8, 2019 at 1:07 am

      He had already been institutionalized for schizophrenia and was already not allowed to have weapons.

      The prosecutor is trying to create a frenzy.

        alaskabob in reply to Mike H.. | September 8, 2019 at 12:33 pm

        Also trying to make legal precedent. The prosecutor wants to be the one to set bump stocked guns as machine guns into actual “settled” law.

          Here’s my concern: The real difference between a fully automatic weapon and a semi-automatic weapon is the rate of fire. Since the cycle time is, I believe identical, the difference becomes how fast after firing a round the next one can be fired in a semi-automatic weapon. In a semi-automatic weapon this is determined by the human reaction to pull the trigger, surely slower than a automatic weapon’s firing. A bump stock essentially reduces that difference between a fully and semi-automatic time to nearly zero, and therefore a semi-automatic weapon with a bump stock has a nearly identical firing rate as a fully automatic weapon.

The problem with addressing mass shootings is that people want an instant easy solution and some of them are using the shootings as a means to ban firearms, altogether. Removing a single instrumentality does not eliminate a person’s ability to commit murder, even mass murder.

Now unlike an incendiary or explosive device, are inefficient. A single use [discharge] usually results in a single casualty. An explosive or incendiary device accounts for multiple casualties with a single detonation. Usually as many, or more than occur in a single mass shooting incident. And, a shooter can be neutralized by another person, especially if that person is armed with his own firearm. The problem with most of these shooting incidents is that the victims are not armed. They occur in “safe” or “gun-free” zones, where other people are not armed.

Even if we limit the banned weapons to high capacity, semi-automatic rifles, this does not guarantee safety. The Virginia Tech shooting was conducted with pistols. And, the shooter in Parkland Florida used 10 round magazines. The reason that they were successful, was because there was no armed response. IN the Pulse nightclub shooting, the shooter was horribly out numbered. If everyone in the club had simply charged him, he could have shot no more than 50. He would then have been out of ammo, in the weapon, and the crowd could have torn him apart before he could reload. And, once he got inside the club, the crowd actually served to protect him from attack by LEOs. Unless you incarcerate a person for life, or execute him, he can still commit mass murder. Possibly with a bomb or an incendiary or a motor vehicle or a club.

Now, the reason why any stringent gun control measure would hurt Trump, is because people buy these high capacity semi-automatic rifles for self defense, not for hunting or target shooting. They are aware of the Tucker Carlson and Mitch McConnell type incidents, where a person may have to defend their family against and attack bu a mob of 30-40 people. For that one wants a high capacity rapid fire weapon, not a 6 or 7 shot revolver. And, as there is an estimated 2+ million weapons of this type in private hands in the US and only a very, very few are used in crimes every year, banning private ownership of this type of weapon would cause more harm than good.

The only reasons for a “universal background check” are 1) to fail and facilitate registration and licensing. 2) To make it more expensive and complex to own guns 3) to remind gun owners and conservatives that the leftists still have their boot on our necks and they don’t care how they achieve power. Any means to an end.

Report: Gun Control Measures Could Reduce Trump’s Base Support Going Into 2020

You think?

I’d have thought it was too obvious to need pointing out, and then I think, no matter what he does he’s going to be up against one of those horrors on the Dem side, so what choice will there be?

we need to pass a law that makes murder illegal.

that will stop these shootings.

Also, what evidence is there that the current background checks by FFLs do any good at all? We’re told how many bad sales have been stopped by them, but how many of those were really bad and how many were false positives, and the same person came back the next day, ran another check, and came back clean?

One clue may be in the fact that nobody is ever prosecuted for being a prohibited person attempting to buy a weapon. You’d think every positive return would result in immediate arrest and prosecution. FFLs would be told to stall the customer while the FBI came to take them away. But that’s not the case. Someone’s check comes back positive, the sale is refused, and they go away with no negative consequences. Why? In what other case does the government as a matter of policy never prosecute criminals?

The answer may be that the government knows or suspects that most positive results are false, and therefore that they will not be able to prosecute, so they don’t bother.

Just a theory, but does anyone have a better explanation?

    guinspen in reply to Milhouse. | September 8, 2019 at 2:35 am

    “In what other case does the government as a matter of policy never prosecute criminals?”

    In Cook County, Illinois, lately?

    Most of them.

Democrats are pushing hard on the idea of reducing sentencing for those found guilty of a crime. They want to decriminalize many acts currently found to be felonies or to turn them into misdemeanors. They want to revise our prisons and such and force the early release of many felons. They even want to eliminate the word “felon” from our vocabulary.
Democrats also want to pass increasingly stringent gun control laws that would not have had any effect on most previous gun crimes, but would in fact turn many law abiding citizens into criminals. Increasingly Democrats are stating clearly their real goal which is to eliminate gun ownership thus leaving America unarmed and unable to defend themselves from criminals or the government (a redundancy).
Is anyone else seeing a trend here? Isn’t it time we start asking the Democrats the question of “Whose side are you on?” because it would appear they are all in for the criminal while doing all they can to eliminate our ability to defend ourselves from the criminal.

From articles I’ve read, the Red Flag laws result in anything but temporary removal of guns. It sounds more like asset confiscation where getting your stuff back is expensive and difficult.

    SDN in reply to hvlee. | September 8, 2019 at 9:29 am

    Just like all the other forms of “asset forfeiture” that the government is using to steal your property even if you are found not guilty.

The “red flag” laws are already being used to end 1st Amendment rights. From the Washington Examiner:

“The FBI exercised Oregon’s new “red flag” law to confiscate firearms from a former Marine who allegedly said he would “slaughter” antifa protesters at a demonstration in Portland earlier this month.”

“Shane Kohfield threatened to kill antifa members who he feared would take up arms against right-wing activists. He made the threats on a loudspeaker while donning a “Make America Great Again” baseball cap with a knife and a copy of his concealed carry permit strapped to both shoulders.”

“”If antifa gets to the point where they start killing us, I’m going to kill them next,” Kohfield said outside of Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler’s home. “I’d slaughter them, and I have a detailed plan on how I would wipe out antifa.””

“FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task responded within days to seize all of Kohfield’s weapons. Agents cited the red flag law to temporarily confiscate the guns, though Kohfield had not committed a crime.”

He was also involuntarily committed to a V.A. hospital.

He has EVERY right to say that if a thug group starts killing people, he will respond in kind. As a matter of fact, we have an obligation to do that.

So the red flag laws are just a backdoor way to kill the 1st Amendment. Meanwhile the “antifa” KKKrs are running around loose, hitting people, burning things, causing mayhem, and nothing is done to them. It’s an utter disgrace!

    Are FBI agents allowed to enforce state law?

      Mac45 in reply to MarkS. | September 8, 2019 at 2:47 pm

      “Are FBI agents allowed to enforce state law?”

      Not unless authorized to do so by state statute. However the JTTF is an inter-agency operation. The members of the task force include federal, state and local LEAs. In this case, Oregon local or state LEOs probably acted under the red flak law and the FBI supported them.

      It is interesting that this occurred after the statements were made outside the home of the Mayor of Portland.

    Our FBI, doing their best to protect and defend Antifa.

“could”? Frankly I think it more likely that passing useless gun control could lead to Trump being a one term president.

Trump has already:

Ordered the ATF to ban bumpstocks by fiat
Failed to push for the campaign promised national reciprocity and banning of gun free zones
Failed any followthrough on HPA
appeared to be open to discussion on red flags and UBC

His support has already reduced.

    Mac45 in reply to Sian. | September 8, 2019 at 3:07 pm

    Banning bump stocks was stupid, but not really problematic.

    National reciprocity is a problem. Any federal legislation would have included uniform standards for the issuance of carry licenses, and those would have been more restrictive than many states already have. The present situation, with individual states deciding upon reciprocity individually.

    Gun free zones are actually only constitutional on private property and in certain high security government facilities.

    The HPA was stupid to begin with. While firearm suppressors can be desirable in certain situations, they are neither necessary nor desirable for the vast majority of firearms uses. Earplugs are much more effective, cheaper and do not effect the balance and performance of the weapon. The HPA [which has been around since 2015] never had any significant support, outside of hobbyists.

    Now, IMHO, both red flag laws and UBC are grossly unconstitutional. Also, confiscating a person’s firearms, without incarcerating that person is of limited effectiveness, if the person actual contemplates committing violence against other. The whole purpose of UBC was to establish a national forearms registry.

      Milhouse in reply to Mac45. | September 8, 2019 at 4:10 pm

      Gun free zones are actually only constitutional on private property and in certain high security government facilities.

      Since when? What is your source for this assertion? It would be news to many state and local authorities, including, just to cite two examples I’ve seen myself, public parks in Columbus, OH, and public transit in Missouri.

        Exactly what are you asking here?

        If you are saying that governments are saying that one can not carry in a public park or on public transportation, then they have to make the case that these locations are high security facilities which have an overriding public need to prohibit weapons to be brought into them. AND, the facility has to provide screening to prevent the introduction of these items.

        From 1868 until 2010, most states and local governments thought that they could restrict the ownership and possession of firearms, and other weapons. This, even though the 14th Amendment applied the entire Bill of Rights to the states. So, the state and local governments have been enacting and enforcing unconstitutional laws for

          Mac45 in reply to Mac45. | September 9, 2019 at 12:25 am

          -page 2-
          nearly 150 years. Big surprise. Remember, even after Heller, Heller II and McDonald, you still have local and state jurisdictions who continue to unconstitutionally restrict firearm possession.

          Milhouse in reply to Mac45. | September 9, 2019 at 2:00 am

          I am asking what is the source for your assertion that governments, post-Heller and –Macdonald, are not allowed to forbid carrying on their property? You assert it, but how do you know it’s true, and how can we know? The fact is that governments to this day do openly do this, and if there were a law forbidding it how is it that nobody has yet challenged them? Are there no lawyers in Columbus or in St Louis? And I very much doubt those are the only such places, they’re just the ones I’ve seen that post prominent signs about it.

          Mac45 in reply to Mac45. | September 9, 2019 at 12:17 pm

          To answer your question, I refer you to McDonald v Chicago.

          What happened, in this country, was that the enactment of the 14th Amendment, in 1868, applied the entire Bill of Rights, including the 2nd Amendment, to the states. At the moment of enactment, all state and local laws restricting the right of a person to keep and gear arms were rendered unconstitutional and, therefor, null and void. However, this was a totally unforeseen or intended consequence of the 14th. No one saw it, at the time. So, state and local jurisdictions just kept cranking out and enforcing unconstitutional gun control laws; until McDonald was heard. See, a practice is either constitutional or unconstitutional, it does not miraculously BECOME unconstitutional, when a court rules that it is. So, all of these local laws, which restrict the ownership and possession of firearms are just as unconstitutional as if they were passed by the US Congress. Get it?

          Now, we live in a society based upon legal precedent. And, we tend to accept these precedents as being binding until a court rules that they are not, even if they are erroneous, legally deficient or outright unconstitutional. So, there is a tremendous amount of legal inertia involved. But, whether a law is constitutional or not is like being pregnant. It either is or is not, irregardless of whether a court or a doctor says it is.

          Now, IMO, the state can abridge the right to possess firearms, and other weapons, in certain high security facilities; such as prisons and schools. However, in order to be able to justify such an exception to the 2nd Amendment, the facility has to have a clear and overriding public safety issue, which would preclude the introduction of weapons into the facility, and the facility would have to severely restrict public access and actively screen for prohibited items, such as weapons, prior to allowing entry. A public park, where there is essentially NO entry control would not qualify. Most public transportation, which did not require screening for weapons, would not qualify for an exemption. And, of course any venue where any weapons were allowed, can not legally justify banning a certain type of weapon.

          To recap, IMO, in order for a government entity to be able to logically justify banning the introduction of any weapon into any facility it has to do three things:

          1) be able to justify that the facility is a highly sensitive or secure facility in which there is an overriding public need to ban the introduction of weapons,

          2) actively restrict public access to the facility and

          3) actively screen those seeking entry for weapons prior to their being allowed to enter.

          Milhouse in reply to Mac45. | September 10, 2019 at 2:51 am

          Nothing in Heller limits states’ authority to restrict carrying on their property. You’re not citing Heller, you’re citing your own imagination.

          Milhouse in reply to Mac45. | September 10, 2019 at 2:51 am

          Sorry, I meant nothing in McDonald limits states’ authority to restrict carrying on their property. You’re not citing McDonald, you’re citing your own imagination.

Subotai Bahadur | September 8, 2019 at 4:05 pm

I note that Democrat controlled areas have legal restrictions on gun sales and possessions far beyond the rest of the country. And they have far more firearm crime than the rest of the country. The shootings that occur every weekend in Chicago and Baltimore have nothing to do with the legal ownership of firearms in other states. In fact DOJ studies have shown that other than the fact that firearms are manufactured in a limited number of places, after the initial legal purchase which has to follow all the rules, firearms used in crime are procured locally, and usually criminally. No amount of “registration” would prevent that.

In all those areas, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon is illegal. And that charge is usually dropped by the prosecution to get a plea bargain and because it is a high penalty charge. Charge, convict, and take the proven felon off the streets to make the streets safer. Oh, yeah. All those areas tend to have felons who are not part of the country’s ethnic majority. Democrats can’t prosecute them. So, they do not enforce the law they call for. Similarly for those who are mentally incompetent.

Prosecute the perpetrator, not the tool he uses.

We are running out of political ways to defend the Constitution. I am reminded of a Chinese legend I was told about as a child.

China was united for the first time by the Chin Dynasty in 221 BC. It was an absolute dictatorship and hated by the people. To control them, the Emperor wanted to make sure that only his troops had weapons. So other than farm implements, the only sharp thing the people had was one cooking knife for every 5 households, shared.

According to legend, to organize a revolution they had to coordinate. There is a Chinese pastry called “Moon Cakes” filled with various things. They are exchanged between households during the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. To avoid the Emperor’s spies, the messages coordinating households so that the few knives they had could be used were baked into the Moon Cakes and passed around.

On the appointed night, those with knives approached and killed individual and small groups of soldiers, took their weapons, armed themselves and others with the soldiers’ weapons, and went and killed more soldiers, etc.

That was the start. Within a couple of years [206 BC], the second Emperor of the Chin Dynasty died in his burning palace. And the Han Dynasty [China’s ancient golden age] began.

As I said, the legend just came to mind. It has been a long time since we had Moon Cakes in the Autumn.

Subotai Bahadur

If by universal background checks (UBC) we do include transfer to immediate family; father/mother to a child as one example, then no way.

However, I could live with UBC if we are excluding those family transfers. If and only if, in exchange, the other side agreement to require the presentation of a ‘real ID’ compliant form of identification at time of application to transfer is made. That won’t be too hard to achieve.

The next item will be a poison pill, but it really isn’t intended to be. That same ID requirement for exercising 2nd amendment right would also be required to vote in Federal elections.

Unfortunately the so called progressives will not see the hypocrisy inherent in their refusal while a some in the gun community will reflexively oppose the trade off as interfering with the exercise of 2nd amendment.

IMO, we are not giving up a whole bunch in exchange for a huge get on ID for Federal elections, even if this is agreed to by the D. Personally I think that this should be the offer made and let the D be the party of opposition. For once let them explain to wavering, moderate/independent suburban voters why they refused to support a ‘common sense’ piece of legislation.

How many transfers can an individual without possessing an FFL conduct anyway? At a nominal $25 fee two dozen transfers per year is $600. If one is conducting that many purchase/sale transfers don’t you need an FFL anyway?

Awaiting the incoming hate rounds.

      CommoChief in reply to Perfesser33. | September 8, 2019 at 8:57 pm


      Thanks for posting the link. Maybe we could go a step further, since everyone will have to possess a real ID compliant card anyhow wouldn’t that be an easy first step verification for employers? Followed up by everify?

    In the first place, background checks can not be used to prohibit the ownership or possession of firearms. This is a violation of the language of the 2nd Amendment. And, the 2nd Amendment has applied to the states since 1868, when the 14th Amendment was enacted. Now, the federal government knows that they are a violation of the 2nd Amendment, so they justify them under the commerce clause. This is the same thing that they have done with fully automatic weapons and short barreled firearms. None of these things are technically banned. A transfer tax has to be paid to obtain one. is all. In actuality, this does constitute a ban, but people ignore this and go along with the fiction.

    The problem has become acute, because people go along and surrender their rights. The NRA has been doing this for decades. They have been allowing the anti-gun crowd to chip away at the 2nd Amendment guarantees of the people. So, now we have whole classes of weapons which are essentially banned or restricted due to barrel length, total length, operating system and, for a while, magazine capacity. This is not restricted to firearms either. many locales have restrictions on the size of bladed weapons. their operating systems and even their appearance. All of this is unconstitutional. And it is well past time for people to say not only enough, but to demand the clock be turned back to before these unconstitutional restrictions existed.

      CommoChief in reply to Mac45. | September 9, 2019 at 7:43 pm


      You state that ‘background checks cannot be used to prohibit ownership or possession of firearms’.
      1. Kindly read my post again and show me where I advocated that. I didn’t, my post dealt with transfer not possession.

      Your constitutional rights arguments relating to the 14th amendment passage incorporating 2nd amendment rights upon state governments.
      1. For argument sake I will stipulate that, IMO this is moot because we are discussing congressional action; Federal government not state level action.
      2. At time of adoption of Constitution I am sure you will agree that some persons were prohibited from owning firearms; foremost example would be those held in slavery. Clearly then some categories of people could be prohibited from firearms ownership and the practice was constitutional.
      3. Arguably, 2nd amendment rights are limited to the composition of the body public which comprise the ‘Unorganized Militia’. Even if we start down the road of subordinate clauses, the fact remains that this right is associated with the unorganized militia.

      You and I totally agree regarding firearms acts passed during violence of prohibition era and subsequently which regulate the transfer of certain categories of weapons. How could congress exercise it’s enumerated power to ‘grant letters of marque and reprisal’ to a person if that person is prohibited from possession of military weapons? If they did there would be a considerable lag time due to the necessity to then obtain and train with them.

      IMO recognition of the current political reality vs an absolutist perspective is essential to maintaining our rights. Politics is not pretty, it is profane, ugly and unpleasant.
      Politics is foremost the recognition that you try to get the best outcome possible today and tomorrow work to get another bite at the apple once political reality makes it possible.

      The UBC for transfers to non-family members doesn’t really change much. In my hypothetical solution ‘our side’ gets real ID as a voting requirement. That is huge in exchange for practically very little IMO.

      A last point we agree on. We have to remember to force or political representative to go back and fight once political circumstances favor it. The pendulum must swing in both directions, not simply a continuous erosion of 2nd amendment.

If president Trump want’s to loosen the hounds of the Commiecrat party to further investigate he and his family. He would be wise to not further infringe on that which Shall Not Be Infringed as he will loose a large percentage of what base he has.

President Trump could very well doom his re-election if he listens to his daughter, son-in-law and the leftist media and gets on board with the anti-gun groups.

As a certified done that I can tell you that the talk on the gun blogs is to go back to the situation in the Obama years ,
Better to have a Democrat president and Republican House and Senate .
That way the Republicans can be united in opposition to any gun control measures the president may introduce.
With DJ T as the president, RINOS are falling all over themselves to infringe on the second amendment.
President Trump’s banning of bump stocks by executive fiat caused me to have to turn in three of these legally acquired items that I very much enjoyed using with no affect on terrorism.
And he got nothing in return for the bump stock ban. No action on national concealed carry and no hearing protection act.
Judging by the comments on the gun blogs President Trump is very close to losing all support from people of judging by the comments on the gun blogs President Trump is very close to losing all support from people of them the gun.

If the 2nd amendment absolutist wing of the gun community decides to join the ‘never trump’ brigade over UBC which will help elect truly anti-gun President, Senate and House majority then to paraphrase HL Mencken ‘.the people voted for this..we deserve to get it good and hard.’

Your decision to either stay home on election day or worse vote for ‘not Trump and the Senators/Representatives who supported him’ will aid anti-gun policies. Please choose wisely.