Why anti-gunners aren't backing Newsom's amendment

AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has rattled the cage a bit with his gun control constitutional amendment proposal. The measure seeks to codify a few of the more publicly popular gun control measures as part of the Constitution, thus making them constitutional by definition.


Many have noted that getting such a measure through will be tough in the best of circumstances and, frankly, this isn’t the best of circumstances.

It’ll be especially difficult to get it passed without the support of gun control groups. While it’s unlikely they’d oppose such an amendment, we’re not exactly hearing a lot of support for it, either.

This op-ed, written by a fan of gun control, may give us a glimpse as to why that is.

Gov. Gavin Newsom has a good target, but the aim is off in his effort to amend the U.S. Constitution with a gun-control mandate.

California’s liberal governor has absolutely no chance of getting a gun control amendment adopted. It’s beyond the realm of political possibility — at least for the foreseeable future.

But that’s OK. At the current rate of gun carnage across America — and with the firearms lobby’s stubborn refusal to compromise on reasonable regulation — it’s only a matter of time in this century before some 2nd Amendment tinkering occurs.

“If you don’t start, it will never happen,” he says.

Newsom’s aim is off-line because he’s trying to cement specific regulations into the Constitution.

And there we have it.

See, it’s not that they oppose these measures–how could they when they’ve been pushing for these exact policies for years now–it’s that they don’t like the fact that this amendment codifies pretty much these specific regulations.

As such, depending on the wording of the proposed amendment, it may well make it more difficult for gun control groups to push their preferred policies because hey, the 28th Amendment exists.


From a purely strategic point of view, I can kind of see their point. While Newsom appears inclined to also have the amendment allow some degree of new gun control, for anti-gunners, the problem is that it doesn’t really solve the issue.

What they won’t say is that it doesn’t allow them to eventually ban just about everything.

So while they won’t oppose it, they’re not going to trip over themselves to offer even tentative support here and now. They’re especially unlikely to do anything to back it when everyone knows it’s just not going to happen.

After all, gun control groups haven’t been able to push these measures through Congress. How in the hell does anyone think they can get a constitutional amendment ratified? Why should groups like Giffords, Brady, and Everytown spend their resources on a forlorn hope?

Look, the media wants to treat this like a serious suggestion, but read the room for a minute. We obviously don’t want this, but even the other side is, at best, lukewarm over this proposed amendment.

If that’s not a recipe for Newsom to be smacked down, I don’t know what is.

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