Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Just in case you were wondering about Newt and firearms . . .

Courtesy of a guy from Florida, we have this link to a timeline with sources called "Newt Exposed." And, courtesy of that we have a Newt moment on the Second Amendment from Publicola entitled: "Newt Doesn't Get It" from four years ago. The comments below are all Publicola's. It wasn't really necessary for me to add anything.
Last week on the Hugh Hewitt Show Newt Gingrich answered a few Right to arms related questions. A caveat: Hewitt is not very knowledgeable on the mechanics of the Right to arms. I think he has a general idea of the theory & supports it to some extent but I wouldn't say he's adamant about the issue, so Hugh didn't ask any follow up questions that could have clarified Newt's views. I'm going with what Newt said but it's possible that his views may be slightly different than what they seem. No way to tell unless there is some follow up to his statements. So I'm relying on only what he said in his interview with Hewitt & what I think his answers imply.
HH: "...Do you support allowing individuals to own those weapons labeled assault weapons under that law?"
NG: "Well, if you remember, there are a number of weapons under that law that are not assault weapons, and the law the way it was written in the Clinton administration is an absurdity. And I think people proved that at the time. And I voted against the law, and in fact, I helped stop it at one point."
Note that he says a number of weapons that were covered by the ban aren't "assault weapons" & that it was written poorly. The first is partially true but I'd have argued that all the weapons covered by the ban were not "assault weapons" as it was a contrived term to facilitate that specific law. The second - well it was written absurdly, but the premise was the absurdity more so than the language, which Newt seemed to imply the latter in his statement.
But he did vote against it before he voted against it so that's a point to his credit.
HH: "And so how would you…what weapons ought Americans not be allowed to own under the 2nd Amendment."
NG: "Look, I think we ought to draw a clear distinction about a whole range of weapons that are explicitly military, and I have no interest in arguing or defending the right of people to randomly hold weapons that are that extraordinary, except under very, very unique circumstances."
A huh. Basically Newt is saying that he has no clue what the 2nd amendment was about. I do wonder what he would define as extraordinary.
HH: "All right, so basically, return the right for some of these higher caliber weapons, but keep the military weapons away from."
NG: "Right. I just think, you know, if you said to me would I feel comfortable if my next door neighbor had a 50 caliber machine gun, I would say no."
HH: "Yeah."
I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable if my next door neighbor had a radio talk show, or a congressional seat, or a presidential campaign, but does that mean we throw the weight of the law against those people even though they've done no harm to anyone? Of course what would be funny is if one of his neighbors did own a belt fed .50 (since Newt lives in Virginia & Virginia doesn't restrict automatic weapons as long as they're possessed in compliance with federal law).
Luckily for Hugh Cali doesn't allow folks to own items that the 2nd amendment had in mind, so any automatics in his neighborhood are owned either by the LAPD or criminals (that was redundant wasn't it?).
But Hugh & Newt seem to be in agreement that arms designed for martial use shouldn't be owned by mere civilians.
NG: "And I realize that for a purist, that probably means I’m a squishy on the 2nd Amendment. But I do think there’s a line of practicality here. I’m also not very much in favor of them buying M-1 tanks just because it amuses them."
I'm not in favor of politicians doing anything for their own amusement on their own time, but again would it be proper to craft laws to stop them?
& tanks - what the hell is it about the Hugh Hewitt show that always involves tanks? Maybe it's a corollary to Godwin's law - on the Hugh Hewitt show if any discussion of the 2nd amendment continues for more than 45 seconds someone will mention tanks.
From what it seems Newt supports the 2nd amendment, but only to a certain point. When martial arms are involved he gets uncomfy. I'm not real clear on where he'll draw the line - whether it's just belt fed .50's or perhaps something more common - but it's clear he has a line.
As I said I'd love to get some clarity on his answers, but A: Hugh isn't very knowledgeable about the mechanics involved B: doesn't seem to be enchanted with the actual purpose of the 2nd amendment & C: seems to reserve the hostile witness treatment for principled conservatives.
Then again Hugh is a Romney supporter who'd probably also back Giuliani if Romney lost the primary to him.
It may be a generalization but I'm gonna roll with it for a while - it's hard for me to believe someone seriously supports the Right to arms if they back Romney, Giuliani, McCain, Thompson, Hillary, Obama, Edwards & possibly Newt.
Yes; Newt voted against the AWB but it seems the problem he has is in the basic underlying theory of the 2nd amendment - that every citizen be capable of defending against a soldier or cop bent on carrying out tyrannical directives. unless that is corrected he will be an unpredictable ally of ours, though the Fuddites would have a sure friend.
Again I'd like a follow up session on Newt's answers but I don't think Hewitt has the desire or capability of doing so.


Anonymous said...

My next door neighbor has a leaf blower that he shouldn't be allowed to own. The bastard blows all his leaves onto my lawn when I'm at work.

Back to the post... If I could afford it, I'd have a tank in the garage.

And a fueled and loaded F-15 in a hangar somewhere close by.

And that's just for starters.

If the government can own toys like this, why not me?

drjim said...

This 'squishiness' on the 2nd Amendment is one of the biggest gripes I have about Newt.

Anonymous said...

No Newt. No Mitt. No more people with funny names.

Anonymous said...

"... that every citizen be capable of defending against a soldier or cop bent on carrying out tyrannical directives."

And the proof of this fact is found here:

Federalist Papers #46

"Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. And it is not certain, that with this aid alone they would not be able to shake off their yokes. But were the people to possess the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will and direct the national force, and of officers appointed out of the militia, by these governments, and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance, that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned in spite of the legions which surround it."

rexxhead said...

Anon @ 6:24 -- Since all gov't power/authority comes from the people, if the gov't has tanks and F-15s, their authority to own such things must have come from us.

Since we just LEND that authority (not surrender it), yes, you DO have the right to own tanks and F-15s.

That's why NFA is patently anti-Constitutional.

Anonymous said...

Hugh Hewitt is a consummate neocon and a GOP shill who cares little if at all about the Jeffersonian republican tradition that is near and dear to our gunny hearts. He'd sell us out in a heartbeat as long as Republicans, any Republicans at all (including the likes of Giuliani and McCain) seize the reins of power from the Dems. At the end of the day, Hewitt cares no more about the right to keep and bear arms than he cares about abuses occuring under the Patriot Act and its progeny. Turn off that damn show of his.

Robert Fowler said...


I wouldn't trust that fat bastard as far as I could throw him.

SWIFT said...

While candidates' views on the second amendment are normally very important to me and I'm often a one issue voter, Newt's views are totally irrelevant. His moral standards are as low as Holders and he'd never get my vote period. Other than Ron Paul, the GOP field of candidates is enough to make me want to power puke!

Anonymous said...

NG: "Right. I just think, you know, if you said to me would I feel comfortable if my next door neighbor had a 50 caliber machine gun, I would say no."

This is clearly a strawman argument. The M2 is a crew-served weapon; the 2A is an enumerated individual right.

Personal ownership of any individually operated defensive firearm, inclusive of light machine guns such as the BAR, is well within the scope of 2A rights.


Anonymous said...

See Newt's response to the GOA questionnaire on newt.org. It's a fairly new posting on the campaign website.

theirritablearchitect said...

Since when have we had a genuine gun enthusiast in the Whore House, Reagan, maybe? Before that...I can't think of another since Teddy R.

Is it any surprise that we have these milquetoast, RINO elitists with Aquanet-set hairstyles, prancing around like the limp dicks that they are?

Dedicated_Dad said...

No Mitt-for-brains.
No Newt.

Forced to choose, I'll vote "let's get this over with" -- IOW "Uhh....Bama."

I swore when I held my nose and voted "lesser of 2 evils" that I'd never do it again.


Ed said...

In 1775, civilian government in the Massachusetts Bay Colony had been suspended for seven years and replaced by British military rule, which controlled only Boston. Local civilian government still prevailed outside Boston.

As far as the tanks and F-15s are concerned, when the British regulars marched from Boston to Lexington and Concord they were on a mission to arrest people leading the opposition to military rule and to seize individual and community owned weapons, munitions and stores such as preserved food suitable for military use. The British use of military force against a civilian population was opposed by civilians organized and led by other civilians using personal weapons and supplies and community owned weapons and supplies. These organized civilian forces had previously been used against hostile Indians and to augment British regulars in the French and Indian War twenty years earlier. Civilian owned merchant vessels at sea typically had civilian owned cannon and other arms for the defense of the ships.

Following the Battle of Lexington and Concord, Virginia plantation owner and French and Indian War militia leader veteran George Washington wrote "the once-happy and peaceful plains of America are either to be drenched in blood or inhabited by slaves. Sad alternative! But can a virtuous man hesitate in his choice?"

Organization of a United States government under the Constitution did not force the people to yield their civil rights. Some still find that regrettable, as they would prefer that the plains of America be inhabited by slaves in their service.

Anonymous said...

Newt just needs to be educated on gun rights.

He already knows what happens when you support something as stupid as the AW Ban. Remember, he came to power thanks to the backlash on that.

I'd vote for Newt or Romney (I'll hold my nose, though) over Obama ANYDAY. I rather be voting for Cain, but the media killed him.

A second term for Obama means the gloves are likely to come off, at least with regards to whomever is pulling his limp puppet hands.