Guns and Bitter

Where exactly does Barack Obama stand on gun control?

“Four months after the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess guns, its decision is under assault — from the right,” the New York Times reports on its front page today.

The derision toward the decision in the case known as “Heller” comes from those who see similarities in the ruling to Roe v. Wade; they think both abortion and guns should be regulated by the states, not the court.

The Heller decision seems to have tied a lot of folks in knots. It was one of several issues that Barack Obama flip-flopped on after the primaries - and even before, as we shall see.

“When it comes to gun control, the Democratic Party is a house divided against itself. That helps explain Barack Obama’s dizzyingly inconsistent positions on District of Columbia v. Heller, the landmark Second Amendment case decided by the Supreme Court last week,” Jeff Jacoby wrote then in the Boston Globe.

Marc Ambinder wrote on the Atlantic’s website that “it seems clear that Obama was OK with how DC government balanced those rights and is now OK with the see-saw swinging in the other direction.”

But months before the decision Robert Novak pointed out that, as on many issues, Obama’s position on gun control was squishy, in a column titled “Obama’s Gun Dance.”

Obama might be trying to thread a political needle for his own purposes, but his lack of clarity leaves him vulnerable to others filling in the blanks. He was never going to get support from the National Rifle Association or any of its state affiliates - and this fact check says an NRA ad campaign “distorts Obama’s position on gun control beyond recognition” - but the venom of this “Open Letter to the Nation’s Sportsmen” issued by the executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association is telling in how much more aggravated the right is with Obama’s wobbling than the left is.

Here is the letter issued by the ISRA’s Richard Pearson, who cites his personal lobbying of Obama in the Illinois Senate as validating his views:

Fellow Sportsman,

Hello, my name is Rich Pearson and I have been active in the firearm rights movement for over 40 years. For the past 15 years, I have served in the Illinois state capitol as the chief lobbyist for the Illinois State Rifle Association.

I lobbied Barack Obama extensively while he was an Illinois State Senator. As a result of that experience, I know Obama’s attitudes toward guns and gun owners better than anyone. The truth be told, in all my years in the Capitol I have never met a legislator who harbors more contempt for the law-abiding firearm owner than does Barack Obama.

Although Obama claims to be an advocate for the 2nd Amendment, his voting record in the Illinois Senate paints a very different picture. While a state senator, Obama voted for a bill that would ban nearly every hunting rifle, shotgun and target rifle owned by Illinois citizens. That same bill would authorize the state police to raid homes of gun owners to forcibly
confiscate banned guns. Obama supported a bill that would shut down law-abiding firearm manufacturers including Springfield Armory, Armalite, Rock River Arms and Les Baer. Obama also voted for a bill that would prohibit law-abiding citizens from purchasing more than one gun per month.

Without a doubt, Barack Obama has proven himself to be an enemy of the law abiding firearm owner. At the same time, Obama has proven himself to be a friend to the hardened criminal. While a state senator, Obama voted 4 times against legislation that would allow a homeowner to use a firearm in defense of home and family.

Does Barack Obama still sound to you like a “friend” of the law-abiding gun owner?

And speaking of friends, you can always tell a person by the company they keep. Obama counts among his friends the Rev. Michael Pfleger - a renegade Chicago priest who has openly called for the murder of gun shop owners and pro-gun legislators. Then there is his buddy Richard Daley, the mayor of Chicago who has declared that if it were up to him, nobody would
be allowed to own a gun. And let’s not forget Obama’s pal George Soros - the guy who has pumped millions of dollars into the UN’s international effort to disarm law-abiding citizens.

Obama has shown that he is more than willing to use other people’s money to fund his campaign to take your guns away from you. While a board member of the leftist Joyce Foundation, Barack Obama wrote checks for tens of millions of dollars to extremist gun control organizations such as the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence and the Violence Policy Center.

Does Barack Obama still sound to you like a “friend” of the law-abiding gun owner?

By now, I’m sure that many of you have received mailings from an organization called “American Hunters and Shooters Association (AHSA)” talking about what a swell fellow Obama is and how he honors the 2nd Amendment and how you will never have to worry about Obama coming to take your guns. Let me make it perfectly clear - everything the AHSA says about Obama is pure hogwash. The AHSA is headed by a group of left-wing elitists who subscribe to the British view of hunting and shooting. That is, a state of affairs where hunting and shooting are reserved for the wealthy upper-crust who can afford guided hunts on exclusive private reserves. The AHSA is not your friend, never will be.

In closing, I’d like to remind you that I’m a guy who has actually gone nose to nose with Obama on gun rights issues. The Obama I know cannot even begin to identify with this nation’s outdoor traditions. The Obama I know sees you, the law abiding gun owner, as nothing but a low-class lummox who is easily swayed by the flash of a smile and a ration of rosy rhetoric. The Obama I know is a stony-faced liar who has honed his skill at getting what he wants - so long as people are willing to give it to him.

That’s the Barack Obama I know.

I have not fact-checked Pearson’s claims about Obama’s legislative record; I’m sure many of them are in dispute.

And in September, Pearson said that “we’ll be stepping up our efforts to hold anti-gun politicians accountable for their attacks on the rights of the law-abiding citizen” while acknowledging the selection of the ISRA as the Affiliate of the Year by the Citizen’s Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

Finally, here is the website for the American Hunters and Shooters Association mentioned by Pearson. Posted in Presidential Poop, Punditocracy   Tagged: Barack Obama, gun control, Heller, Illinois State Rifle Association, NRA, Richard Pearson   

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