Did Biden really promise Beto O’Rourke would run national gun control policy? Yes

By Guy Page

September 25, 2020 – Yesterday on Twitter a prominent liberal Vermont pundit (oh okay, it was Kevin Ellis) asked if anyone really believes a President Joe Biden would appoint Beto “we are going to take away your AR-15” O’Rourke as his national gun control czar.

I picked up the gauntlet. Edited slightly for brevity, the thread appears below:

Page: “Biden said he’d make Beto his gun czar. Beto has said people shouldn’t own AR-15s. Taking them at their word, it’s reasonable to think owning and operating America’s most popular .22 will become problematic.”

Ellis: “Please. Do you really believe that Joe Biden would appoint Beto gun czar. Stop watching Tucker Carlson. Biden has to fix the economy and virus. He doesn’t have time for silly fake fights like this…..Please show me where Biden said this about Beto. And Fox doesn’t count. Give me Reuter’s, NY Times, WashPost or someone reputable.”

Well, that was easy.

I reprinted a Biden quote from the large, liberal daily newspaper Dallas Morning News March 10, 2020 in which he tells O’Rourke in front of an adoring crowd, “you’re going to take care of the gun problem with me.” 

Here’s the quote: “I’m going to guarantee you, this is not the last you’ve seen of this guy,” Biden told a raucous crowd at Gilley’s, his arm on O’Rourke. “You’re going to take care of the gun problem with me. You’re going to be the one that leads this effort.” [Italics mine]

There. He said it. So unless Biden is just another dishonest politician making empty campaign promises, under Biden it’s reasonable to expect so-called “mandatory buybacks” of the nation’s most popular firearm. It’s reasonable to expect because it’s what Biden and Beto have already told us to expect. 

Not that there is anything inherently reasonable about mandatory buybacks, even in the term itself. The government can’t “buy back” what it never owned. And the word “buy” usually implies consent. 

Kevin Ellis is one of my favorite liberals. He wrote a terrific essay this week about paying it forward across the cultural and political divide. But he and other gun-hatin’ liberals should take note: gun confiscation is becoming less politically “reasonable” or at least advisable. Between March and June Americans bought a record 8.3 million guns, 40% of them new gun owners, as big city rioters smashed, threatened and sometimes killed with little resistance from local police and politicians, and politicians threatened to defund police. These new and repeat gun owners (and presumably voters) now have a large financial and emotional investment in keeping their guns. 

If Biden loses the election, it will be interesting to see how the new gun owners voted, and how they would have voted had not many prominent Democrats pledged gun seizure, stood silent while cities burned, and espoused police defunding. 

Photo credit: Iowa Public Radio

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