To say that the 2020 field of Democratic presidential hopefuls doesn’t like guns is something of an understatement. There’s not a single one of the candidates that anyone should trust on the Second Amendment. The best one could hope for is a candidate who is “less bad” than the rest of the field.
And that was before this past weekend when we had two mass shootings.
Now, it seems those two incidents were enough to push some Democrats even farther to the left when it comes to guns.
This season’s crop of Democratic hopefuls is tacking far to the left on gun control after mass shootings in Texas and Ohio over the weekend. They have called for national licensing and firearm buybacks and suggested sending federal agents into people’s homes to confiscate weapons.
Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, the front-runner in the Democratic race, said he would create a gun buyback program and remove military-style rifles from people’s possession once the weapons are banned.
Sen. Kamala D. Harris said she was open to a mandatory gun buyback program. She also suggested that she was fine with police knocking on doors and taking away weapons. When she was California attorney general, she said, authorities took guns from felons and people deemed dangerous to themselves or others.
“We have to deal with this on all levels, but we have to do this with a sense of urgency,” she told reporters in Nevada.
Several other candidates want to license gun owners.
Until recently, talk of a national database of gun owners and buybacks or confiscations of weapons were more likely alarmist fundraising pitches from the National Rifle Association than real campaign promises from mainstream candidates.
Among those calling for confiscation was failed senatorial candidate and Democrat golden boy Beto O’Rourke who began calls for an Australian-style buyback, which means banning these guns and requiring all privately-owned weapons covered by such a law to be turned over to the government. Oh, and risk civil war in the process.
Yet don’t worry, no one’s coming for your guns, right?
I’ve written about Cory Booker’s call for gun licensing which, frankly, isn’t new from him. What Booker has continually failed to do, however, is highlight just how requiring licenses would have stopped any of this. There was absolutely nothing we’ve seen so far that would suggest either killer would have been denied a license.
Of course, none of that matters. What these candidates and their allies in the media want to do is to be seen “doing something.” It doesn’t have to be a good something, just something. They want to be seen responding so they can pretend that those who are trying to be thoughtful in their approach, trying to find something that might actually help, aren’t really doing much of anything. Such is the way of the anti-gunner.
Democrats are pandering to their base in the belief that polls suggesting overwhelming support for gun control will continue to hold. Ramping up their proposals is just part of that in a very tense time.
What they’re forgetting is that those same polls showed Hillary to be a shoo-in for the White House. How did that work out?
While the American public is probably swinging a bit more toward gun control right here and now, don’t expect that to hold for another year. Using the bodies of the slain as a soapbox to advance your political career may well backfire spectacularly by then.