Gillbrand's gun control plan is kind of different (but not much)

One by one, the Democratic 2020 candidates have been submitting their various policy proposals to their primary voters for consideration. This includes their plans for how they intend to infringe on the rights of gun owners. Oh, I’m sorry… we’re supposed to say “gun violence prevention and common sense gun safety regulations.” The latest entry in this derby is New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. During a stop in New Hampshire, she was asked by a reporter if she supported Cory Booker’s proposal to create a national gun registry. (He calls it “a federal firearm licensing system,” but let’s face it… it’s a gun registry.)

Somewhat surprisingly, Gillibrand passed on the gun registry. But before anyone could accuse her of going back to her younger days when she had an A rating from the NRA, she unleashed a batch of other gun control proposals to maintain her far left credibility. (Washington Examiner)

“No, I think there is a better approach,” Gillibrand told the Washington Examiner at a campaign stop in Warner, N.H., on Saturday, when asked about a plan proposed by primary rival Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J.

“To end gun violence, I would do three things,” she said. “I would, No. 1, pass universal background checks, which are common sense and supported by 70% of America.”

Her second move would be a federal law against trafficking guns. “Because for cities like Newark, N.J., and cities like New York City, the guns are trafficked from out of state into the hands of criminals. And those networks aren’t even a federal crime,” she said.

“And third, I would ban the bump stocks, the large magazines, and the military-style assault weapons.”

Is she disagreeing with Booker because she recognizes that a federal gun registry is a bridge too far for most anyone or just because she doesn’t want to be seen as copying Booker’s platform? Tough call, but aside from that her plans do sound like pretty much the rest of the field. Ban scary looking rifles, shrink the capacity of magazines and make background checks more tedious. Like the rest of her competitors, she ignores the fact that the vast majority of criminals don’t buy their guns legally and don’t submit to background checks. And AR-15s are only used in a comparative handful of violent crimes every year.

Her gun trafficking suggestion is an interesting one. I’m pretty sure even the majority of Second Amendment supporters don’t want to see people illegally trafficking in firearms. But is that actually legal in any state of the nation? I can’t find an example. So if she wants a federal law against it, I suppose she’s trying to make gun trafficking even more illegal. You go, girl.

Getting off the subject of gun control, Gillibrand went on to continue bragging about her ability to “win in a red district.” (Her old upstate New York district was and still remains pretty much on the purple to red side.) I don’t understand how she sees this as a selling point in a liberal primary. As we’ve pointed out here before, she didn’t win that seat by persuading conservative voters to agree to liberal policies. She won by being even more conservative than the Republican she was running against.

None of this sounds like it’s going to suddenly boost her prospects in the primary. Perhaps that’s why the most recent polling average has her at 0.6 percent. Holy smokes… that’s not even above the background noise level.

Jazz Shaw May 05, 2021 4:01 PM ET