What the Presidential Candidates Say About Guns
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump's own words on gun control
As of now, voters have narrowed the presidential race to two candidates: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Have you decided who you will vote for yet? Gun control is not the only issue that is important to voters, but it is certainly at the top.
ABC News reports that a Pew Research poll conducted in July 2015 shows that 85 percent of Americans favored background checks on all private gun sales and gun show sales. More recently, On June 20, 2016, CNN reports that their newest poll shows support for tougher gun laws rising to 55% — the highest number since just one month after the shootings that killed 20 grade-school children in Newtown, Connecticut, in January 2013.
92% of those polled said they wanted expanded background checks, 87% support a ban for felons or people with mental health problems and 85% said they would ban people on federal watchlists from buying guns. That number rises from 87% to 90% among Republicans and is nearly as high for Democrats at 85%. Remarkably, this is something that both parties may be able to find some common ground on.
But what do the major party candidates say? Hillary Clinton’s website says,
- Strengthen background checks and close dangerous loopholes in the current system.
- Hold irresponsible dealers and manufacturers accountable.
- Keep guns out of the hands of terrorists, domestic abusers, other violent criminals, and the severely mentally ill.
“I don’t know how we keep seeing shooting after shooting, read about the people murdered because they went to Bible study or they went to the movies or they were just doing their job, and not finally say we’ve got to do something about this.”
HILLARY, AUGUST 27, 2015
Donald Trump’s website shows an official statement about guns under “Positions.” It says,
The Second Amendment to our Constitution is clear. The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed upon. Period.
He says he will protect the freedoms granted by the Second Amendment by enforcing the laws that are on the books, fixing the broken mental health system and defending the rights of law-abiding gun owners.
Honestly, the two candidate’s positions don’t seem very different on this issue, with the exception that Trump appears to want to take more action to somehow “fix” the mental health care system, which hopefully means improving access to services. But what will they really do when it comes down to the hard work of actually acting on these positions?
Who are you planning to vote for and why? Keep the conversation civil please.