Trump’s MAGA Veepstakes: VP Contenders Put the Gun Lobby Over Americans’ Safety

As Donald Trump’s VP contenders continue to side with the gun lobby, DNC Rapid Response Director Alex Floyd released the following statement: 

“Just like Donald Trump himself, his VP contenders have desperately caved to the gun lobby at every turn and failed to protect our communities’ safety. Trump’s veepstakes hopefuls back his dangerous MAGA agenda of railing against commonsense reforms, while voting against the most significant federal bipartisan gun safety legislation in decades. As Trump and his MAGA minions put the gun lobby ahead of the American people, voters are ready to reject their reckless and out-of-touch agenda in November.”

Donald Trump’s potential running mates share yearslong records of opposing commonsense gun safety measures.

JD Vance: ‘The background check system is not the problem… the idea that expanded background checks is going to solve that problem is unfortunately not true.”

Washington Post: “Rubio, the two-term Republican incumbent, said days after the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla. — at an event with student survivors — that he would support such age restrictions as well as expanded background checks on gun purchases. But at his first and only debate with Democratic challenger Demings, the senator said the law ‘doesn’t work’ and also said background checks would not have stopped the litany of shootings.

“And he criticized the gun-control legislation that Congress passed this year with some Republican support, calling it ‘crazy’ and suggesting it would allow guns to be seized in too many situations.”

KFYR: “Gov. Doug Burgum, R-N.D., has signed a proclamation designating North Dakota as a Second Amendment Sanctuary State. Gun rights were a hot topic this legislative session and Gov. Burgum has signed at least ten gun related bills into law, most notably a bill that removes liability from someone who’s defending themselves.”

Southwest Times Record: “Rep.-Elect Tom Cotton, R-Dardanelle, said Wednesday that Congress should focus on the mental health system in response to the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School. He is opposed to any new gun regulations, saying that there are ‘enough already on the books.’”

WPDE: “South Carolina Senator Tim Scott was among the 33 Senators that voted against the [Bipartisan Safer Communities Act].” 

Daily Republic: “Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., isn’t interested in expanding federal background checks for gun-buyers. Background checks would not have stopped recent violent, public gun deaths, she said.”

Florida’s Voice: “U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Florida, said Tuesday he voted against the bipartisan gun legislation because it supported funding for red flag laws, which he called a ‘poison pill.’”

1819 News: “Republican U.S. Senate candidate Katie Boyd Britt said she opposed the bill and does not support additional gun laws. ‘Gun grabbers use so-called ‘red flag laws’ as a gateway to push their disarming agenda,’ Britt told 1819 News.”

The News TN: “Blackburn voted against passage of the ‘Bipartisan Safer Communities Act,’ a piece of gun control legislation that incentivizes for states to pass ‘red flag’ laws, closes of the long-controversial ‘boyfriend loophole’ that allows some domestic abusers to purchase firearms, pours resources into federal mental health efforts and strengthens background checks for those under the age of 21 purchasing firearms, among other essential steps.”

KHOU: “Gov. Greg Abbott signed the open carry and campus carry bills into law Saturday.”

Trump’s VP contenders in Congress caved to the gun lobby by voting against the most significant bipartisan gun safety legislation in nearly 30 years that President Biden and Vice President Harris worked across the aisle to deliver.

Associated Press: “Biden signs landmark gun measure, says ‘lives will be saved’”

“President Joe Biden on Saturday signed the most sweeping gun violence bill in decades, a bipartisan compromise… The legislation will toughen background checks for the youngest gun buyers, keep firearms from more domestic violence offenders and help states put in place red flag laws that make it easier for authorities to take weapons from people adjudged to be dangerous.”

Voted against in the Senate: Tim Scott, Marco Rubio, Tom Cotton, Marsha Blackburn, Bill Hagerty, and Mike Lee.

Voted against in the House: Byron Donalds and Elise Stefanik.

Trump is running on a dangerous MAGA agenda and is railing against commonsense reforms like expanded background checks.

Politico: “Donald Trump told National Rifle Association members on Friday that ‘no one will lay a finger on your firearms’ if he wins the presidency, vowing to roll back Biden-era gun restrictions.

“The former president specifically said he would roll back the Biden administration’s ‘Zero-Tolerance’ policy that revokes federal licenses from firearm dealers that violate gun laws. And he said he would undo regulations on pistol braces, or stabilization devices that have also been used in gun massacres.”

Trump: “I will sign concealed carry reciprocity. Your Second Amendment does not end at the state line.”

CNN: “Trump suggests arming teachers as a solution to increase school safety”

Reuters: “[Trump] also called for eliminating gun-free school zones, adding that such zones leave victims with no means to defend themselves in case of an attack by an armed person.”

Trump won’t stop pandering to the NRA — which has spent tens of millions of dollars to support his campaigns — and earlier this year told school shooting victims to “get over it.”

New York Times: “In the face of N.R.A. opposition, [Trump] has also retreated from his earlier openness to expanded background checks and a renewal of the expired ban on assault weapons.”

New York Magazine: “President Trump met with survivors of the Parkland school shooting and attempted to convey a sincere intention to act. … What happened next was predictable. Trump met with the head of the NRA. He stopped talking about the issue he was going to solve.”

Rolling Stone: “Trump on Iowa School Shooting: ‘Get Over It’”

“A day after a gunman killed a sixth grade student and wounded five other people at Perry High School northwest of Des Moines, Donald Trump returned to the state at a campaign event and told residents that they ‘have to get over it.’”

Trump: “There’s no bigger fan of the NRA [than me].”

NBC News: “Trump says mass shootings are not ‘a gun problem’ as 2024 GOP hopefuls pledge loyalty to the NRA”

New York Magazine: “After Taunting Republicans for Being Afraid of NRA, Trump Gives In to NRA”

Washington Post: “After latest shooting, Trump pushes Facebook ads ‘straight from the NRA playbook’”

Politico: “Former President Donald Trump on Friday addressed the National Rifle Association’s annual conference in Houston … just three days after a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers at a Texas elementary school.”

CNN: “A slew of 2024 GOP presidential hopefuls courted gun rights activists Friday at a National Rifle Association convention in Indianapolis that took place in the wake of mass shootings in Kentucky and Tennessee in recent days. Former President Donald Trump … attended the gathering.”

Yahoo News: “The gun-rights group spent $54 million during the 2016 election cycle, including $30 million to help Donald Trump get elected president.”

Fortune: “For instance, in 2020, the NRA alone spent over $12 million campaigning against Biden and another $4.5 million in favor of Donald Trump.”

Trump made the gun violence epidemic WORSE as president, making it easier for criminals to carry guns by standing in the way of commonsense gun reform — all while the murder rate skyrocketed.

New York Times: “Conceding to N.R.A., Trump Abandons Brief Gun Control Promise”

“President Trump on Monday abandoned his promise to work for gun control measures opposed by the National Rifle Association, bowing to the gun group and embracing its agenda of armed teachers and incremental improvements to the background check system.”

The Hill: “The [Trump] White House on Monday issued a statement warning that President Trump would veto proposed legislation to enhance background checks for gun purchases if it passes the House and Senate.”

Politico: “Trump quietly used regulations to expand gun access”

“In addition, the Trump Justice Department narrowed the definition of “fugitive,” excluding people from being added to the national database and barred from buying a gun.”

Associated Press: “FBI: 2020 homicides up nearly 30%, largest 1-year jump ever”

Philadelphia Inquirer: “The Council on Criminal Justice, a D.C.-based research group, found that homicides in 21 American cities were up 32% between March and October compared with 2019. And some analysts believe 2020 could record the largest-ever single-year increase in murders in the United States.”