Chicago Tribune Reporter: Not Safe to Trust Second Amendment to Hillary Clinton

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 08: Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks during a voter registration event at Johnson C. Smith University on September 8, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Hillary Clinton is campaigning in North Carolina and Missouri. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

In a column that ran Sunday, Chicago Tribune reporter and editorial board member Steve Chapman made clear that the Constitution, particularly the First and Second Amendments, ought not be entrusted to Hillary Clinton.

Chapman observed that “it’s not exactly safe to entrust your copy of the Constitution to Hillary Clinton,” and that choosing to do so might mean we get that Constitution back with “some parts missing or mutilated — like the First Amendment and the Second.”

According to Chapman, Clinton’s policies are more anti-gun than those we have seen under President Obama. For example, Obama’s gun control push has been coupled with an admission that “the Second Amendment protects the right of individuals to bear arms.” Whether Obama’s belief in an individual right is heartfelt is another question altogether, but at least he said he believes in a constitutionally protected individual right. On June 5, Clinton twice refused to affirm whether a constitutionally protected individual right exists. Therefore, Chapman observes, “When it comes to gun rights, Clinton has taken a position appreciably to the left of Barack Obama’s.”

But the problem is not simply her June 5 refusal to admit the constitutionality of the right to keep and bear arms; it is also the clear contradiction that emerged during the last presidential debate, wherein she maintained her opposition to the District of Columbia v Heller (2008) ruling while simultaneously attempting to espouse her new conviction that “there’s an individual right to bear arms.”

Thus, she opposes the Heller decision, which reaffirmed the existence of an individual right to keep and bear arms, yet says she believes “there’s an individual right to bear arms.” Chapman covered the contradiction this way:

So Clinton rejects the Supreme Court decision that established constitutional protection for that right — but now agrees the right has constitutional protection? As former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan once said, “If I seem unduly clear to you, you must have misunderstood what I said.”

Chapman continued:

She and Obama both favor universal background checks for gun purchases, a ban on “assault weapons” and denial of guns to anyone on the federal no-fly list. But her cramped view of the Second Amendment suggests she would favor additional curbs that she knows the Supreme Court would not abide.

Her solution to this impasse with the Supreme Court? Change the makeup of the court with “a new justice or two.” At the same time, she wants to strike back at the protections of the First Amendment handed down by the court in Citizens United (2010). “She proposes a constitutional amendment to overturn the decision — which would be the first time in our history that the Bill of Rights would be altered to restrict our freedoms.”

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


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