He maybe our only hope in Nov., but I still don't know. Will not vote for a democrat, even if I am one.
This is a discussion on Senator McCain's Interview with NRA within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I just read this from the NRA website and thought others might be interested in what McCain has to say. Sorry if it is kind ...
I just read this from the NRA website and thought others might be interested in what McCain has to say. Sorry if it is kind of long.
To say that the 2008 elections will be crucial for the future of the Second Amendment would be an understatement. Future efforts to preserve our gun rights and our hunting heritage hinge on who will take the helm at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue next January. NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre and NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox recently sat down with presumptive Republican nominee Senator John McCain. They asked him some direct questions about his record and his philosophy. Here’s what Senator McCain had to say.
Senator, the U.S. Supreme Court will soon decide the case of District of Columbia v. Heller—a case that will address the question of whether the Second Amendment protects an individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms, and whether Washington, D.C.’s bans on handguns and functional firearms in the home are constitutional. What is your position on this historic case?
I hope the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the lower court’s ruling and strikes down Washington, D.C.’s bans on handguns and self-defense in the home. It seems clear to me that the D.C. laws are unconstitutional. From a crime-fighting standpoint, they have been a complete failure. All gun-control schemes are based on the premise that criminals are going to obey the law. Well, by definition, criminals break the law, and they certainly break the law in Washington, D.C., as it ranks among the highest crime areas in the country every year. I was proud to co-sponsor legislation in Congress to overturn D.C.’s ban on handguns and self-defense. I was also proud to join a bi-partisan majority in signing an amicus brief in support of the individual right to own firearms. I was not surprised that my presidential opponents refused to support this common-sense approach to protecting the rights of law-abiding citizens.
Senator, it’s very likely that the next president will have the opportunity to name one or more justices to the Supreme Court. If elected president, what type of justices would you appoint to the Court, and how would you evaluate potential nominees for other judgeships as well?
I will take the same approach to appointing Supreme Court justices that I will to appointing federal judges. I intend to nominate judges who have proven themselves worthy of our trust that they take as their sole responsibility the enforcement of laws made by the people’s elected representatives, judges of the character and quality of Justices Roberts and Alito, judges who can be relied upon to respect the values of the people whose rights, laws and property they are sworn to defend.
Senator, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton upset hundreds of delegates to the United Nations when he said the U.S. would not agree to any treaty on small arms if it violated the Second Amendment rights of U.S. citizens. Now, the U.N. is gearing up for another conference to discuss an arms trade treaty. How would your administration approach these discussions? Would you continue to adopt the position set forth by Ambassador Bolton?
The U.S. Constitution protects the sovereignty of our nation and the rights of our citizens. I will oppose any efforts to restrict the rights of law-abiding gun owners in America by the U.N. or any other international body. I agree with the position of former Ambassador John Bolton that international treaties and agreements must conform to our Constitution, not the other way around.
Senator, if you are elected president, what type of attorney general would you appoint?
As the top law enforcement officer of the United States, it’s critical that the attorney general possess the skills and judgment to enforce the laws of the land, and to lead the Department of Justice in its critical mission. In my administration, the focus of any policy discussion on crime in America will be on the criminal element—not on law- abiding gun owners.
Senator, gun shows have been an American tradition for generations. Millions of law-abiding gun owners enjoy participating in gun shows in their local communities every year. Over the past decade, there have been increasing efforts by anti-gun organizations to shut down the American tradition of gun shows. As you know, many gun owners were disappointed with your past votes on this issue—votes they believe would have brought gun shows to an end. Would you explain your position on gun shows, along with your past votes on this issue?
I appreciate the opportunity to answer this question and make my views on gun shows clear for your members and supporters. As you mentioned, I have supported efforts to have NICS background checks apply to gun sales at gun shows. I recognize that gun shows are enjoyed by millions of law-abiding Americans and, rest assured, I do not support efforts by those who seek to regulate gun shows out of existence. I also oppose efforts to require federal regulation of all private sales such as a transfer between a father and son or husband and wife. I recognize that despite the promise of a “fair and instant” check, the reality is that problems exist with the system that often unfairly burden lawful purchases of firearms. I also understand that background checks at gun shows need to be conducted rapidly so they do not unfairly limit the ability to conduct lawful sales. As president, I will work with the FBI and Congress to make sure that background checks are accurate, fair and instant.
Senator, we regularly see groups appear that purport to represent gun owners and hunters, claiming to be a “moderate” voice in the gun-control debate. Currently, there’s a group called the American Hunters and Shooters Association that purports to represent hunters and shooters but in reality is supporting Senator Obama, whose anti-gun record and sentiments are well known. What is your view of groups like this?
There is no shortage of groups in Washington that misrepresent their real agenda on the Second Amendment and many other issues. Some groups claim support for the Second Amendment, but their real agenda is to further restrict the rights of law-abiding citizens through more gun control. I think one of the reasons the National Rifle Association has been so successful is that you represent real Americans, you represent them very ably and your goals are well known. I think there should be no doubt that the NRA is the organization in the U.S. truly dedicated to protecting the Second Amendment rights of all Americans. That is why you have earned such respect from those who share your beliefs in the importance of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms.
Senator, you were the chief sponsor of “campaign finance reform” legislation—legislation that, when passed, included a provision that restricts the NRA’s ability to run broadcast ads lobbying on legislative issues in the 60 days before a federal election. Many gun owners believe that this provision severely restricts their ability to participate in the legislative process, and in fact, many believe it to be unconstitutional. Would you explain your motivation behind campaign finance reform, and why the broadcast restriction was included in the final bill?
I fought for campaign finance reform because I strongly believed that prior to the enactment of this legislation, our system of financing campaigns was seriously broken and in need of repair. I genuinely worried that legislative provisions were being passed or defeated based on the size of “soft money “ contributions made by affected interests. I can assure you that my motivation in this effort was directed at these out-of-control amounts of “soft money” that seeped into federal campaigns—not a desire to restrict the ability of gun owners or any other group of citizens from making their voices heard in the legislative process. I am fully committed to defending the constitutional right to petition the government for the redress of grievances.
Senator, would you explain the reasons behind your opposition to Bill Clinton’s ban on many semi-automatic firearms, that he misleadingly called “assault weapons”?
Of course. Gun bans don’t work, because they only restrict the rights of law-abiding citizens. Criminals pay no more attention to laws banning guns than they do to laws banning assault, robbery or murder. In fact, the National Institute of Justice found that the firearms banned by President Clinton were used in less than two percent of all crimes involving firearms—clear evidence of the ineffectiveness of this law. I voted against the Clinton gun ban when Congress considered it in 1994 and I voted against efforts to keep that misguided law on the books. I was pleased to see the law rightfully sunset in 2004, because it represented an arbitrary restriction on the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens.
Senator, throughout your career you have opposed waiting periods on firearm purchases, bans on commonly owned ammunition, and efforts to register and license gun owners. What are your reasons for those positions?
Throughout my years in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, I have consistently opposed these measures, because they are arbitrary restrictions on the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens. Gun bans, waiting periods, ammunition bans, registration and licensing of gun owners—each of these has a common theme: They only affect law-abiding citizens. And they have another common theme: They don’t work as crime- fighting tools. The way to reduce crime is to prosecute criminals to the fullest extent of existing laws—which, if elected president, gun owners can count on my administration to do.
Senator, you were a co-sponsor of, and helped lead the effort to pass, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act in the Senate—a bill to stop the reckless lawsuits that were designed to bankrupt the American firearm industry. Why did you feel so strongly about that legislation?
I was proud to co-sponsor and work hard for the passage of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. For too long, big-city mayors were trying to sue the American firearm industry out of business, by forcing them to spend nearly a quarter of a billion dollars just to defend their innocence in court. Holding the manufacturers of a lawful product responsible for the unforeseeable acts of criminals is not the way we do things in America. It was important for Congress to step in and protect this key industry—an industry that President Franklin Roosevelt called the “arsenal of our democracy.” I was proud to help lead that effort.
Senator, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, there were efforts to confiscate legally owned guns from citizens at a time when there was a breakdown of public services, including police protection. What is your view on this?
I was disturbed to see the actions of authorities attempting to disarm law-abiding citizens, especially at a time of crisis or emergency when public authority was in doubt. I was pleased to support and vote for an amendment that prohibited such confiscation in 2006. One of the core purposes of the Second Amendment is to enable our citizenry to protect themselves, their families and their property. Government should never undermine this inalienable right.
Senator, why should gun owners support you in November?
Because I support you and your concerns about the future of firearm freedom in our great country, unlike either of my potential opponents—Senator Obama or Senator Clinton. While we have disagreed at times on some issues, I have never tried to hide my positions, or to say one thing and do another. And the fact is that we have always agreed on the vast majority of issues—as evidenced by my opposition to gun bans, ammunition bans, waiting periods, registration and licensing, and other arbitrary restrictions on law-abiding gun owners during my entire career. As I mentioned earlier, of the three presidential candidates who had an opportunity to sign the historic and bipartisan amicus brief in the Heller case—strongly arguing that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms and that Washington, D.C.’s ban on handguns and operable firearms in the home is unconstitutional—I was the only one who did. And unlike my eventual opponent, I will appoint an attorney general who will vigorously prosecute criminals, instead of restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens. NRA members and gun owners across the country can count on a McCain administration to respect their Second Amendment freedoms and hunting heritage. I hope to have your support and the votes of your members this November.
He maybe our only hope in Nov., but I still don't know. Will not vote for a democrat, even if I am one.
John Steinbeck: Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he's too old to fight, he'll just kill you.
Yeah there is no way on God's green earth I would vote for a democrat. Too bad Ron Paul didn't make the nomination though. He would of been a much better canidate.
+1 for Ron Paul. However, McCain has my vote. I was originally in favor of Obama before I knew much about him. His stance on firearms is so inexplicably illogical and unintelligent that I can't possibly vote for him. He is just not a very smart man to buy into that garbage he regurgitates. Too bad.
Based on the speech, sounds pretty good to me. The only thing he said that could be construed as anti-rights, would be background checks and background checks have never bothered me a bit.
I kind of think it's nice that people with felony's and warrants get turned down for purchasing guns.
There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil.
Who is John Galt?
I think he coddles too many groups. I suppose it's somewhat important in order to get elected, but it lacks integrity to be so waffling on important issues.
I'm of the opinion that it's darned near impossible for any independently-wealthy person to get elected because of the simple fact that such a person isn't truly beholden to anyone. The "system" won't really allow that to happen, coopted as it is.
Imagine that GWB was defeated and Al Gore became president.
Instead of Justice Alito, and Chief Justice Roberts, we would have another Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Now where are your gun rights with the current case of D.C. Vs Heller. Does that make you who are determined to vote for Paul or Barr or not vote stop and think?
Justices Alito and Roberts will influence the court for two or three decades. What if they were not there and two liberals were there instead?
That is the major importance of what this election is about. Who is more likely to appoint justices, and federal judges like Alito, Thomas, Scalia, or Roberts?? I promise that Obama or Hillary will not if they are in power.
Gets your eyes off the front sight and look beyond.
If one takes the position that the 2nd is a protector of all of the Constitution, then those who do not vote for McCain are not attempting to protect the Constitution to the best of their abilities. He was not my choice, and I do not really care for him, but he is by far the best we have running, and he will get my vote.
Jerry, that's an awful flawed argument considering the make-up of the Congress (who has to confirm whoever is nominated) and the reputation for pandering Senator McCain is building. When Bush Jr. nominated who he did, he did so with the confidence of his political party holding a Senate majority (a pretty notable one). That is no longer the case; the pendulum has been swinging the other way. IF any new SC Justices are confirmed, do you really think the Democratic majority is going to let them be a more conservative or 2A-friendly justice?
I don't buy that at all. This sounds like another in the list of excuses to cast one's vote for someone that nobody can outline many (if any) good points for. Champion of our cause he is not.
On 2A issues, McCain is by far our best choice. If you are interested in trying to win the war in Iraq, McCain is the only choice. On just about any other issue, not so much.
McCain is pro-amnesty for illegals and against securing our borders. He is a firm believer in global warming, and would not hesitate to sign whatever 'cap and trade' legislation crosses his path. He is all for closing Gitmo, and granting the legal rights of any US citizen to the terrorists being held there. He is for implementing some sort of federally administrated mandatory health care insurance plan. His record shows a clear pattern of taking the path of least resistance, rather than taking a stand on principal.
I don't trust him, don't like him, and don't want him to be our next president.
What is my other choice? Obama, Clinton, and McCain agree on the vast majority of issues, and the few that they disagree on are the few where I agree with McCain!
A person I have been debating the issue with keeps repeating that no matter which choice we make, we'll be headed in the wrong direction. I agree. With McCain in office, we might be able to slow down a bit. That's about the best we can hope for. In a given timeframe (hopefully, 4 years), the distance traveled depends entirely on your speed. McCain is our best chance to slow the democrat majority we are bound to end up with in both house and senate.
I'm voting for air brakes... we need to slow down this runaway train.
Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. It's worth it.
We need to spend more time trying to get some of the anti Senators and Represenatives out of office. It seems that people only concentrate on the President and forget about who initiates these draconian laws.
Oh I can think of a few Commanders in Chief who've done a number on the Constitution...
I have no problem pulling the lever for John McCain.
I suppose I'll have to hold my nose and vote for Mcamnesty...I could just puke. At least he's far and away the best candidate as far as the 2nd amendment goes...on everything else, he might as well be Clinton.
"Any rationally thinking person is armed" ---Hinds Co. constable John Lewis
Hold my nose and vote for McCain
Yoda, I am, yes.