During an October 30 campaign speech in Greeley, Colorado, Donald Trump reiterated his pledge to “save” the Second Amendment and “protect the right to keep and bear arms.”
Donald Trump said:
Hillary wants to effectively abolish the Second Amendment… I got the earliest endorsement ever from the National Rifle Association, the NRA… We are going to save your Second Amendment. We are going to save your Second Amendment, you don’t have to worry about it.
As the crowd applauded, Trump said he will “protect the right to keep and bear arms.”
Trump’s pro-gun message resonates because he has been consistently pro-gun throughout the presidential campaign.
On April 11, 2015 — as all the would-be Republican primary field was taking shape — Trump told Breitbart News:
It is so important that we maintain the Second Amendment and that we maintain it strongly. And one of the main reasons is because the good people, the upstanding people, follow laws and norms but the bad ones don’t. So if the Second Amendment weren’t there to protect our rights and someone tampered with them, the good people would be affected but the bad people wouldn’t care–they couldn’t care less.
It is absolutely imperative that we maintain the Second Amendment in its strongest form.
Moreover, Trump is a lifetime member of the NRA and a concealed carry permit holder who believes concealed carry “is a right, not a privilege.” In a September 18, 2015, position paper, Trump explained that “the right of self-defense doesn’t stop at the end of your driveway” and contended that the right to defend one’s life is viable wherever a person goes. He said, “I have a concealed carry permit and…tens of millions of Americans do too. That permit should be valid in all 50 states. A driver’s license works in every state, so it’s common sense that a concealed carry permit should work in every state.”
He said, “I have a concealed carry permit and… tens of millions of Americans do too. That permit should be valid in all 50 states. A driver’s license works in every state, so it’s common sense that a concealed carry permit should work in every state.”
Trump opposes an “assault weapons” ban and a ban on “high-capacity” magazines. He said:
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.
On October 9, 2016, Breitbart News reported that Trump countered the push to ban “assault weapons” by simply stating that Americans should be able to own the “the firearm of their choice.”
In addition to being consistently pro-gun, Trump has also stayed the course in warning Americans that Hillary Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment.
On May 10, 2016, Clinton spokesman Josh Schwerin responded to Trump, saying, “Of course Hillary Clinton does not want to repeal the Second Amendment.” But after saying this, Schwerin hedged his bets by reminding everyone that Clinton does disagree with the District of Columbia v Heller (2008) ruling; that ruling reaffirmed the individual right to keep and bear arms. Huffington Post quoted Schwerin as he stressed that Clinton “believes Heller was wrongly decided in that cities and states should have the power to craft common sense laws to keep their residents safe.”
This proves Trump’s point, which is not that Clinton wants to repeal the Second Amendment but that she wants to gut it.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.