Does he support it? Oppose it? Support it and oppose it, per his absurd, opportunistic reversals on the D.C. ban over the past eight months? I do believe this qualifies as tepid, cautious, qualified, “can we stop talking about this now?” approval:
I have always believed that the Second Amendment protects the right of individuals to bear arms, but I also identify with the need for crime-ravaged communities to save their children from the violence that plagues our streets through common-sense, effective safety measures. The Supreme Court has now endorsed that view, and while it ruled that the D.C. gun ban went too far, Justice Scalia himself acknowledged that this right is not absolute and subject to reasonable regulations enacted by local communities to keep their streets safe. Today’s ruling, the first clear statement on this issue in 127 years, will provide much-needed guidance to local jurisdictions across the country.
As President, I will uphold the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun-owners, hunters, and sportsmen. I know that what works in Chicago may not work in Cheyenne. We can work together to enact common-sense laws, like closing the gun show loophole and improving our background check system, so that guns do not fall into the hands of terrorists or criminals. Today’s decision reinforces that if we act responsibly, we can both protect the constitutional right to bear arms and keep our communities and our children safe.
Conspicuously left unsaid is whether he agrees with the actual holding that the D.C. ban went too far. That would give us some, um, “much-needed guidance” beyond the platitudes here about where he draws the line between the individual right and common-sense regulations. Also, like I said in the Heller thread, it’s true that there’s plenty of room in the opinion to make liberals comfortable with the ruling — witness the optimistic reactions from Pelosi, Bloomberg, and even Russ Feingold (who answers to a rural constituency in Wisconsin) — but I’m not sure it imagines any geographic distinctions per Obama’s Chicago/Cheyenne point. I’ll have to go back and read the whole thing, but the upshot seems to be that you have a right to a handgun or perhaps a rifle no matter where you live. If your jurisdiction wants to let you have more than that, fair enough; that’s where Chicago vs. Cheyenne would matter. But as a baseline right, that’s the bare minimum. Did anyone come across anything in their skimming that cuts against that?
Speaking of Chicago, here’s the only prominent Democrat in the country today willing to go on record as being pissed off. Exit question: This makes two prominent cases in two days where St. Barack’s been on the wrong side of the Court’s liberals. Does that portend anything for his Supreme Court appointments or is this just more crap dumped on top of the mountain of centrist shinola he’s shoveling lately to try to get elected?
Update: Excellent. Here’s the video of what Politico picked up on earlier — Obama nodding along in February as an interviewer reminds him that he supports the D.C. ban. Click the image to watch.
Update: Fox Business asked him about the D.C. ban point blank in an interview this morning — and he dodged it again.