Last night, guns came up during the the first presidential debate of the 2016 general election. And once again, gun sense champion Hillary Clinton reaffirmed her support for common-sense gun safety measures and made clear that our nation’s weak gun laws directly impact public safety.
The presidential candidate endorsed by the extremist leadership of the NRA – Donald Trump – seemed to “agree” with Hillary Clinton when it came to keeping guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists. But let’s take a closer look at the proposal backed by Trump and the gun lobby – which would leave suspected terrorists able to legally buy guns.
The NRA has long denied that our nation’s weak gun laws are good news for terrorists. In fact, both Isis and Al Qaeda have urged their followers to take advantage of the loopholes in America’s gun laws to arm themselves. And in the wake of the San Bernardino attack last year, the extreme leadership of the NRA helped design a piece of sham legislation introduced by Senator Cornyn with an unworkable standard: it requires officials to show in court that someone will actually commit an act of terrorism, or has already committed, or conspired to commit an act of terrorism. Furthermore, Senator Cornyn’s amendment would give the government only three days to bring the suspected terrorist into court and demonstrate this unworkable standard—or else the FBI must let the dangerous gun sale proceed. In short – it’s a red herring. And on stage last night, Donald Trump, in his usual role as a NRA mouthpiece, seemed to point to the same sham bill – acknowledging the very real threat while offering a policy proposal that falls far short of a workable solution.
At the end of the day, Trump is holding hands with the extremist leadership of the NRA. In fact, the NRA is the biggest endorser of Trump – endorsing him earlier than they’ve ever endorsed a candidate before and forking up $15 million on television ads in crucial battleground states supporting Trump’s campaign of violence and vitriol.
There is only one candidate in this presidential election who has consistently stood up for common-sense gun laws and vowed to buck the gun lobby, and that candidate is Hillary Clinton. Clinton is fighting to make 2016 the year of gun safety – that’s why she has our endorsement.
With just a few weeks to go, it’s clear that gun violence prevention is no longer the third rail of politics – Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America have been working to change the dialogue on guns in America and making 2016 the Year of Gun Safety. This year, we will prove definitively that gun safety is a winning political issue and dismantle the gun lobby’s perceived electoral power. If you’re interested in learning more or connecting with national gun safety advocates, gun violence policy experts, legal experts and/or survivors of gun violence, please don’t hesitate to reach out.