President Donald Trump is the most vocal supporter of the Second Amendment to the Constitution that has ever inhabited the White House.
Before 1934, there were few restrictions on firearm purchases and virtually none at the federal level. It is not surprising that before 1934, presidents said little about the Second Amendment.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt was blatantly anti-Second Amendment. He showed it with his court picks and the attempt to register and license all handguns in the United States. While the attempt failed, the first serious federal gun law, the National Firearms Act, was passed as a compromise.
Only President Trump has given serious support to the Second Amendment in the 85 years since. Most have tended to be neutral; Democrats became eager to impose more infringements in the 1960’s when the entire party was radicalized. President Reagan was supportive, but not as much as President Trump.
What has President Trump done to restore the Second Amendment?
The most obvious, long lasting and consequential actions are President Trump’s pick of originalist and textualist Supreme Court justices, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.
These two justices mean the infringements of Second Amendment rights winked at by the Supreme Court in the last three years, will probably be stopped and rolled back. The Supreme Court will probably validate the right to bear arms outside the home, not just to be able to carry a pistol from the kitchen to the bedroom. It is likely the Supreme Court will hold the Second Amendment protects ammunition sales and the private sale of firearms as well as to mere possession.
Without originalist and textualist justices on the Supreme Court, the circuit courts would be allowed to run roughshod over Second Amendment rights, just as they did for 80 years after the Miller decision. During that period, the Supreme Court simply refused to hear any cases involving the Second Amendment. That will not happen.
We can thank President Donald Trump. President Trump had to drag the Republican party over the finish line, but he was able to do so.
There are other consequential victories from the Trump administration. They are worthwhile.
The Department of Justice reached a settlement with Defense Distributed and the Second Amendment Foundation on removing the ITAR restrictions that had been put in place by the Obama administration. The ITAR restrictions criminalized the transfer of computer code on how to make guns, at least over the Internet. The ITAR restrictions imperiled both the First and Second Amendments. A lawsuit against the settlement is in progress. It will fail.
The Corps of Engineers (COE) agreed to settle the two cases challenging the Constitutionality of bans on the exercise of the Second Amendment on lands administered by the COE. Rulemaking on those agreements is still in progress. Those should support Second Amendment rights on COE managed property.
Importantly, President Donald Trump defends the concept of armed self-defense. As a person who actively held a difficult to obtain concealed carry permit in New York City, he views reality with the gaze of an armed man.
From school shootings, where he has championed the use of armed teachers to defend their charges, to the current outrage of the Pittsburgh synagogue mass murder by a Trump hating anti-Semite, he has refused to bow to those who want a disarmed population. The Left is continually outraged with President Trump’s contention that more armed citizens would result in fewer mass murder victims.
We have not seen progress on national reciprocity or the hearing protection act. President Trump has lacked the support of his party for the first year and a half of his Presidency. That has been changing. President Trump has been winning over adversaries among the Republicans, just as he has been winning on many national issues.
It has become trite to call the upcoming election the most important election ever. The American system of government has proven amazingly durable. However, over the last 50 years, we have seen a steady erosion of the power and freedoms of the citizenry.
President Trump’s election has set the stage for stopping the juggernaut of Progressivism, Globalism, and the massive regulatory state that continually infringes on all our rights as free people.
The loss of the House or the Senate will stop his reforms. Nothing will be accomplished except for endless investigations and calls for impeachment. Many Democrats are calling for the impeachment of Justice Kavanaugh and packing the Supreme Court with more Progressive justices when they take the Presidency, perhaps in 2020.
I do not think that will happen. It all depends on President Trump’s supporters going to the polls and retaining Republican party control over the House of Representatives and the Senate.
President Trump, in two years, has been able to convince, cajole, and construct a Republican party in his image. Control of the House and the Senate is necessary to enact his much-needed reforms. All indication are the races will be settled by which party’s voters decide to go to the polls.
President Trump has the numbers if his supporters are willing to take the time to vote.