Beto O’Rourke can’t keep from tripping over himself, can he?

While he was the Democratic Party’s golden boy when it looked like he might have a chance to unseat Sen. Ted Cruz, now that he’s running for president, the fickle finger of fate has decided he’s going to get to be an “also-ran.”

However, hand it to O’Rourke. He was bound and determined to make a splash, and he did. In the process, he may well be helping gun rights in ways he never meant to. So much so that I’ve counted him as a Second Amendment hero, if inadvertently.

Now, the fruits of O’Rourke’s labors are paying dividends.

Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., is launching an internet/social media only ad that levels a broadside punch to Arkansas Democrats, not necessarily his opponent, Josh Mahony.

The ad, titled “Standing up to Beto,” references Democratic Presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke’s recent trip to Arkansas and his rhetoric on gun control. There’s additional imagery in the ad of members of “The Squad” – three Congressional Democrats including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib. It also touts Cotton’s support of Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

“O’Rourke’s support for confiscating guns from law-abiding citizens shows how out-of-touch Democrats are with Arkansas. By featuring O’Rourke as their keynote speaker, the Arkansas Democratic Party demonstrate they’re in lockstep with the liberal policies of the radical candidates running for President,” said Brian Colas, Cotton’s campaign manager. “Senator Cotton believes that a clear majority of Arkansans, both Republicans and Democrats, will stand with him in defense of the Second Amendment.”

Raise your hand if you didn’t see that coming.

And it’s not just Cotton who is using this to point out what Democrats are wanting, either. Oh no, not by a longshot.

Gun rights activists are reveling in Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke’s call to “take” popular semiautomatic rifles such as the AR-15 from people, saying it finally revealed Democrats’ true intentions and will further complicate Congress’ push for new gun control laws in the wake of mass shootings.

Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation, said he was “ecstatic” when he initially heard Mr. O’Rourke’s vow to confiscate firearms.

“My initial thoughts were I was glad he was openly honest about what Democrats want, because we’ve been saying for years that they want to confiscate guns, but now they said it in their own words,” Mr. Gottlieb said. “And my first thought was, ‘I’m really glad he said it [because] now we can make them eat it.’ “

To be sure, Beto’s comments are going to serve as a distinct rallying cry for years to come. However, almost as interesting to me is the rhetoric of those Democrats who aren’t backing O’Rourke’s proposal.

You see, almost none of them are standing up and saying that you can’t ban an entire category of firearm. Practically none are standing up for the Second Amendment.

No, their issue is that O’Rourke is going at this now instead of later.

In other words, they don’t oppose Beto on the merits of his proposal but that it isn’t workable right now. That, too, should be part of the rallying cry for gun rights activists.

Still, O’Rourke has given us a wonderful gift. It would be a shame not to use it. I’m glad to see I’m not alone in thinking that.