“Barack Obama is the most anti-gun president ever,” economist and author John R. Lott Jr. wrote in his new book, At the Brink. Lott’s assessment of the president’s true beliefs about guns is informed by conversations they had while working at the University of Chicago in the 1990s and by Obama’s public record over the years.

Lott, who had met Obama shortly after completing research on concealed handgun laws and crime, recalls Obama telling him one day at the university’s law school that he “[doesn’t] believe people should be able to own guns.”

His support of a ban on handguns in 1996 and a ban on the sale of all semi-automatic guns in 1998 reflect his true convictions, but run contrary to recent comments he’s made on the issue. Via CNS News:

President Barack Obama describes his views on guns much differently now that he is on the national stage, Lott believes, pointing to an interview on Fox News in which Obama states, “I have said consistently that I believe that the Second Amendment is an individual right.”

But, Lott isn’t convinced:

“Despite his assurance to Fox News that he understands the Second Amendment, it’s a good bet that the positions Obama took on guns during his time at Chicago reveal his true convictions.”

And just as Obama isn’t truly committed to a meaningful dialogue about how to reduce gun violence other than insisting gun control is the answer, he similarly rejected hearing the “other side” of the gun debate while at the university. According to Lott, Obama “grimaced and turned away” at his suggestion that the two meet for lunch to discuss their views on guns.

Understanding the president’s true beliefs about guns in America has greater implications than any gun-control proposal he’s pushing, however. According to Lott, “The greatest threat is in his [Obama’s] power to reshape the federal courts…Each appointment to the Supreme Court could determine whether the people are allowed to keep their guns.”

As an example, just look at who Obama thinks is “exactly the type of person” who should serve on the D.C. Court of Appeals, via Breitbart:

As part of their ongoing war on guns, Senate Democrats are planning to push confirmation of Caitlin Halligan to the DC Court of Appeals. A Senate GOP aide told Breitbart News that she’s the “most anti-Second Amendment nominee” Obama has ever put forward.


In a May 5, 2003 speech, Halligan revealed that she played a role in lawsuits against firearms manufacturers in which authorities were attempting to hold them accountable for crimes committed with firearms. Her comments came in the context of bashing the then-pending Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA).

Senate Republicans successfully filibustered her nomination for the same position in late 2011. Nevertheless, Obama seems determined to fill the slot with a like-minded individual when it comes to the Second Amendment.