At a campaign rally in Lynden, Washington on May 7th, presidential nominee Donald Trump said, “Hillary Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment. She wants to abolish it. Hillary Clinton wants to take your guns away.”
Anyone who has heard her speak before knows that to be the case.
However, in the days since his statement, the Annenberg Foundation’s FactCheck.org and PolitiFact have bent over backwards to defend Hillary Clinton from this description of her positions. These outlets’ attempts to contort Clinton’s record to suit their agenda is so shameless one hopes the efforts prompt Columbia University to create a Pulitzer Prize for cognitive dissonance.
Both FactCheck.org and PolitiFact take a handful of carefully selected statements Clinton and her campaign have made at face-value, while dismissing her more candid statements.
On September 24, 2015, at a fundraiser held at the New York City home of John Zaccaro, Clinton made her views on the Second Amendment abundantly clear. An audio recording of the private event captured the candidate stating, “the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment. And I am going to make that case every chance I get.”
For most Americans, the Second Amendment is synonymous with protection of the individual right to keep and bears arms, thus an effort to eliminate the latter is rightly thought of as an attempt at abolishing the former. Illustrating this link in the minds of the vast majority of Americans, a USA Today/Gallup poll from February 2008 found that 73-percent of respondents understood the Second Amendment to protect “the rights of Americans to own guns,” rather than “members of state militias such as National Guard units.” In 2009, a similar CNN poll found that 77-percent of Americans endorsed the individual rights interpretation of the Second Amendment.
In her response, Clinton, exhibiting a knowledge of the contours of the Australian confiscation scheme, stated, “In the Australian example, as I recall, that was a buyback program. The Australian government, as part of trying to clamp down on the availability of automatic weapons, offered a good price for buying hundreds of thousands of guns.” Clinton concludes her answer by noting, “So I think that’s worth considering. I do not know enough detail to tell you how we would do it, or how would it work, but certainly the Australian example is worth looking at.”
In 2004, Clinton took to the Senate floor to oppose the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects firearm manufacturers and dealers from liability arising from the unlawful actions of a third party. On March 6, after having been repeatedly attacked by Clinton for not opposing the PLCAA, Clinton’s opponent for the Democratic presidential nomination, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), said of her position, “what you’re really talking about is people saying let’s end gun manufacturing in America. That’s the implications of that. And I don’t agree with that.”
Now we have self-described socialist, Bernie Sanders, even stating her desire to hinder American’s from owning guns.