Dems Furious at Beto for Exposing Gun-Control Goals
O'Rourke merely said what all Democrats are thinking. They have to pretend otherwise.
Last week during the third Democrat presidential debate, former Texas Congressman Robert Francis “Beto” O'Rourke really stepped in it, and his fellow Democrats are none too happy about it. Responding to a question on gun control, O'Rourke staked out his position in favor of a mandatory, forced federal “buyback” to seize an entire class of legal firearms from law-abiding citizens, unapologetically declaring “Hell yes, we’re going to take away your AR-15, your AK-47! … We are not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore.”
When asked by CNN’s Jake Tapper if O'Rourke’s comments played into the hands of Republicans, fellow presidential candidate and South Bend (IN) Mayor Pete Buttigieg replied with an emphatic “Yes!” In fact, he continued, “Look, right now, we have an amazing moment right here on our hands. We have agreement among the American people for not just universal background checks but we have a majority in favor of red-flag laws, [banning] high-capacity magazines, banning the new sale of assault weapons. This is a golden moment to finally do something.”
Delaware Senator Chris Coons went even further, lamenting, “Frankly, I think that that clip will be played for years at Second Amendment rallies with organizations that try to scare people by saying that Democrats are coming for your guns. … I don’t think [saying] … we’re going to try to take people’s guns against their will is a wise either policy or political move.”
The problem isn’t that Beto’s fellow Democrats disagree with his extreme gun-control measures. In fact, almost all of them would support such restrictions. But Democrats have spent decades carefully parsing their words over gun control in order to disguise their true intentions; namely, to eventually disarm every American citizen. As NBC’s Chuck Todd told Beto on Sunday, there’s “a lot of hand wringing about what you said, agreeing with your sentiment but concern that the rhetoric is going to actually backfire” [emphasis added].
The problem is that Beto, in a desperate attempt to breathe life into his failing campaign, was actually stupid enough to be honest and openly admit the true goal of Democrats’ gun-control efforts.
Indeed, an analysis of their official positions shows every Democrat presidential candidate is in favor of more gun control. Of the top 16 contenders for the Democrat nomination, all of them support an “assault weapons” ban, 13 support universal background checks, and 10 support “red flag” laws (which can deprive citizens of their Second Amendment rights without due process). Half support banning certain accessories and high-capacity magazines (most of which are actually just standard capacity). Six support some form of “buyback” program (which is itself a misnomer, since the guns are not purchased from the government, and the government is not offering full market value for the guns it proposes to seize).
Other proposals supported by multiple candidates include a national licensing scheme, making gun manufacturers liable for weapons used in the commission of a crime, limits on how many firearms can be purchased, excise taxes on firearms, and raising the purchase age.
Maybe the most frustrating aspect of the Democrats’ positions is that they are rooted in abject ignorance of the history and intent of the Second Amendment, and of firearms generally.
Though O'Rourke claims his proposed seizure is “constitutionally sound,” it is anything but.
The Supreme Court has twice (DC v. Heller in 2008, McDonald v. Chicago in 2010) in the last decade declared that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms.
And though Democrats routinely refer to any EBR (Evil Black Rifle) as an “assault” rifle, the Department of Defense defines assault rifles as “short, compact, selective-fire weapons that fire a cartridge intermediate in power between submachine gun and rifle cartridges.” Selective fire means you can choose between semi- (one round fired per trigger pull) and full-auto (continuous fire as long as the trigger is depressed).
Fully automatic weapons have been effectively banned since the National Firearms Act of 1934, and even The New York Times was forced to admit the misnamed “assault weapons” ban of 1994, prohibiting various semiautomatic firearms, was completely ineffective.
The AR-15 is the most popular rifle in America today, and the focus of the Democrats’ ire. Yet the AR-15 is a semiautomatic rifle that fires a round less powerful than many standard hunting rifles. So why ban a rifle that is functionally equivalent to, though less powerful than, other rifles that Democrats do not seek to ban?
It’s about virtue signaling and optics, and Democrats know it. They get brownie points from the public for “doing something,” even if that something is completely ineffective. According to the latest FBI statistics, rifles of any kind (including not just AR-15s, but any kind of long rifle) account for less than 3% of firearms used to commit murder.
Moreover, sometimes these “assault” weapons are used in self-defense, as reportedly happened just this week in Georgia, where a homeowner defended himself against three armed assailants.
Last Friday, in an interview with Joy Reid, O'Rourke contradicted himself when he brushed aside a question as to whether these firearms would be taken by force. Reid asked, “How would law enforcement be protected from people who are essentially admitting that the way they would protect their ability to own these weapons is to use them?” O'Rourke responded, “You know, my faith, my confidence, is in the people of this country. … We expect people to follow the law, and that’s certainly what I believe will happen.”
This week, he says, “We expect our fellow Americans to follow the law. If they do not, there would be a fine imposed to compel them to follow the law.”
And therein lies the paradox. There is no need to disarm law-abiding citizens if you have faith in them (unless you are planning to engage in the form of government tyranny that the Second Amendment is meant to prevent). And the criminals that we need protecting from don’t follow the law.
In an amusing exchange, poor Beto got the vapors when Republican Texas State Rep. Briscoe responded to O'Rourke’s confiscation proposal by tweeting, “My AR is ready for you Robert Francis.” Beto claimed this was a death threat, though he is the one issuing death threats veiled as confiscation efforts.
Death threats are really scary. Beto should probably exercise his Second Amendment right and purchase a firearm to protect himself.
Maybe an AR-15?