DNC National Press Secretary Sarafina Chitika released the following statement:
“Donald Trump and 2024 Republicans’ public safety agenda is more guns. They continue to put the interests of the NRA and the gun lobby ahead of the safety of our children and our communities. Trump’s radical, dangerous proposals to arm teachers instead of passing commonsense gun legislation would make our country less safe, and the MAGA GOP field has fallen in line behind his reckless plans. While MAGA Republicans put special interests ahead of the American people, President Biden has made real progress to keep our country safe, including enacting the most significant bipartisan gun safety legislation in a generation.”
Earlier this year in a closed-door ceremony with NRA representatives, Ron DeSantis signed dangerous legislation that could make it easier for criminals to carry weapons. DeSantis has also pledged to “absolutely” support open-carry legislation.
NBC News: “With little fanfare, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed legislation Monday allowing residents to carry a concealed loaded weapon without a permit. DeSantis signed the bill in a nonpublic event in his office with only bill sponsors, legislative leaders and gun rights advocates, including the National Rifle Association, in attendance.”
Tampa Bay Times: “Gov. Ron DeSantis was recorded Thursday telling a member of a gun rights group that he supports allowing Floridians to openly carry guns in public — a measure that has been publicly opposed by some law enforcement officials and that would go further than any bill now filed for the upcoming legislative session.”
“‘Yeah, absolutely,’ DeSantis is heard to say during a 10-second interaction recorded by Valdes and shared with the Times. ‘I don’t think they’re going to do it, but I would absolutely.’”
WMUR: “Would you, as president, sign a bill that would allow for national concealed carry of permitted firearms for responsible gun owners?
Nikki Haley still refuses to support gun safety legislation, and she opposed expanding background checks in the wake of the tragic shooting at Mother Emanuel AME Church when she was governor of South Carolina.
USA Today: “Nikki Haley’s town hall here in one of the first primary states opened against the backdrop of a deadly school shooting in Nashville, Tennessee. The Republican presidential hopeful started her pitch by addressing the shooting and telling voters she wants more metal detectors, not more gun control legislation. She called for schools to have one entrance and to use the metal detectors there.”
Washington Times: “South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley on Sunday said the botched FBI background check that allowed the man accused of the massacre at a historic black church in Charleston to buy the handgun used in the attack is tragic but does not justify expanding such checks.”
Vivek Ramaswamy spoke at the NRA convention this year just days after the mass shooting in Nashville and has said everyone — including former felons — should be able to carry dangerous weapons.
Fox News: “GOP hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy to call for shut down of ATF, expanded 2A rights in NRA convention speech”
Forbes: “‘Second Amendment Absolutist’ Ramaswamy Endorses Gun Ownership For Convicted Felons”
Ramaswamy: “I do think concealed carry is important, constitutional carry is important.”
MSNBC: “Vivek Ramaswamy is exploiting the Maine shooting to spread cruel health myths”
Chris Christie has repeatedly opposed commonsense gun safety legislation — including in the wake of devastating mass shootings.
Washington Post: “New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) late Friday vetoed a bill to ban a powerful model of assault weapon that he initially advocated in the wake of last December’s elementary school shootings in Newtown, Conn. The bill that passed New Jersey’s Democratic legislature would have prohibited the Barrett .50 caliber long-range rifle. Although Christie this spring proposed a ban on future sales of the firearm, he vetoed the ultimate bill because he said it went too far, requiring residents who already own the rifle to give theirs up.”
New York Times: “Families of children killed in the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School lashed out at Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey on Wednesday for vetoing a gun control bill that would have banned the sales of ammunition magazines larger than 10 rounds, after he dismissed it as a ‘trivial approach’ to gun violence and ‘the embodiment of reform in name only.’”
Reuters: “Christie, seen as a potential candidate for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, also conditionally vetoed two other bills designed to curb gun violence, sending them back to the state legislature with language that the Democrat-controlled body was unlikely to accept. The two measures would have created laws requiring law enforcement to report lost and stolen gun data to a federal database, embed information about gun permits onto a driver’s license, create instant background checks and require safety training for gun owners.”
NJ.com: “On the heels of the shooting of four U.S. servicemen at a Chattanooga military recruitment center and nine churchgoers in Charleston, S.C., Christie was asked by a questioner at Chapanga’s Griddle & Grill for his position on assault weapons. ‘We need an attorney general who’s going to understand that we don’t need to pass new laws,’ said Christie, ‘We have plenty of laws on the books to stop this.’ … ‘On the issue of assault weapons, here’s the problem,’ said Christie. ‘No matter what laws we pass, the folks who commit these crimes are not looking to do a background check at the local gun store to buy their gun. They’re buying them from other criminals.’”
Asa Hutchinson has long been tied to the NRA — he worked as an NRA consultant and received a glowing endorsement for his second gubernatorial campaign in Arkansas.
KATV: “While there is no record of NRA donations to Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s campaign for governor, Hutchinson has been a longtime friend to the NRA. When Hutchinson was campaigning for a seat in the House, the NRA donated a total of $19,399 to his campaigns from 1995-2002, according to The Center for Responsive Politics. In 2012, he served as an NRA consultant and task force chair. In 2018, the NRA endorsed his second run for governor.
“‘It is great to once again have the support of the National Rifle Association,’ Hutchinson said in a statement during the campaign. ‘I have always been a strong supporter of both the 2nd Amendment and the mission of the NRA,’ Hutchinson said in a statement.”