Townhall Media/Storm Paglia
President Donald Trump was elected in part due to the support he got from gun rights activists. While he didn’t have a history of legislative support for the Second Amendment, he made the right noises and had one more big thing working in his favor: He wasn’t Hillary Clinton.
However, Second Amendment supporters trusted him when he said he sided with us.
Some of us were willing to overlook the bump stock ban. After all, we were looking at bump stocks being banned either way, but at least the route Trump took ended the legislative effort that would have been more far-reaching and broad in its impact.
However, President Trump has announced his willingness to consider banning a safety device because of the Virginia Beach shooting.
President Donald Trump said he’ll “seriously look” at banning gun silencers after last week’s mass shooting in Virginia.
“Well, I’d like to think about it,” Trump said in an interview with Piers Morgan on ITV’s Good Morning Britain. “I’m going to seriously look at it.”
While Trump said he didn’t “love” the idea of a ban, he also was unhappy to see the frequency and severity of mass shootings in the U.S.
Trump’s comments represent a potential crack in Republican opposition to stronger gun control measures.
They follow a shooting last week at a municipal center in Virginia Beach, Virginia, in which a gunman killed 12 people. Police recovered a high-capacity magazine and a silencer mechanism from the scene.
Now, to be fair to the president, he’s not saying he’ll back it. He’s said no such thing.
However, even being willing to “seriously look” at such a ban is troubling.
Just think, we were so close to getting suppressors being sold over the counter like firearms. Now, a couple of years later, we have the President of the United States saying he’ll take a look at backing legislation to ban ownership of the devices.
Keep in mind that this is a technology that has been around for over a century. In that time, they’ve been used in one mass shooting. One. Further, it’s not like people in the building didn’t hear gunfire. They heard it and recognized it. There’s little to no evidence that even a single person died because of the suppressor.
Yet this is what we find ourselves talking about right now. It goes to show you how quickly the world can change.
So what are the ramifications of this?
In and of itself, not much. Trump says he’ll look at the possibility. With luck, he’ll look at it, realize there’s over a million of them in private hands and recognize what a nightmare an outright ban would create, and decide not to pursue it. Or opt not to pursue it for some other reason.
That’s the best case scenario.
However, if the president decides otherwise, we might see a problem. We know damn good and well that the House will have no issue passing a law banning suppressors. With the president siding with the legislation, this could change things in the Senate. Some Republicans eager to curry favor with the White House, coupled with Republicans who would view the president’s backing as political cover, could sign onto such legislation. While Republicans have firm control over the Senate, it’s not so firm that a few defections couldn’t change matters completely.
In other words, if the president backs a ban, the chance of such a ban happening skyrocket.
Let’s hope he decides otherwise.