Bernie Sanders
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By Larry Keane

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders treats the U.S. Constitution like a lost set of keys. He’s suddenly found it and wants the world to know.

The Vermont Independent who is campaigning as a “democratic socialist” took questions during a campaign stop in Iowa when he was asked if he supported so-called mandatory buybacks of modern sporting rifles.

“I don’t support – a mandatory buyback is essentially confiscation, which I think is unconstitutional,” he replied. “It means that I am going to walk into your house and take something whether you like it or not. I don’t think that stands up to constitutional scrutiny.”

Against It Before He Was for It

Sander’s sudden discovery of his voice for Constitutional rights might come as a surprise, especially for the firearms industry and gun owners. He was suspiciously quiet when Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) called for outright confiscation last summer. He didn’t raise a concern later when former Congressman Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke couldn’t help himself when he exclaimed, “Hell, yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47.”

Not a peep out of the Vermont senator then.

Constitutional Confusion

Just because he found out the Constitution bars the government from seizing lawfully owned firearms, he might want to read more. He’s still ignoring pretty important parts.

In the same breath that he doubted the government’s right to unilaterally take guns from law-abiding citizens, he muttered out loud that it was perfectly okay to ban the sale of those same commonly-owned firearms. He must have been so giddy about rediscovering his pocket edition of the Constitution that he completely forgot the landmark 2008 Heller decision in which the late Justice Antonin Scalia correctly stated the government couldn’t ban an entire class of firearms.

If he wanted to do some more studying up on the subject, he could read Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s defense of semiautomatic rifles, like the AR-15, as commonly owned.  He might also want to read what Justices Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch wrote when they blasted the “distressing trend” of treating “the Second Amendment as a disfavored right.”

Strange Company

Even more curious is that Sen. Sanders’ new-found fondness for the Constitution comes on the heels of the endorsements of members of Congress who seem to abhor it. U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) recently endorsed the Democratic candidate for president.

Rep. Ocasio Cortez wants to ban all semiautomatics, not just modern sporting rifles. Rep. Tlaib co-sponsored legislation to ban modern sporting rifles. Rep. Omar signed onto the same bill and once claimed 500 people die each day to so-called gun violence. Politifact called her out on the claim, rating it “false.”

This much is certain. Sen. Sanders’ selective interpretation of the Constitution is suspect. His silence when it was convenient, though, was telling.


Larry Keane is SVP for Government and Public Affairs, Assistant Secretary and General Counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

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    • On the other hand, he recently said Ocasio-Cortez would play a big role in a Sanders admin. If that is politically a good move, I must have no real concept of how modern Americans think.

    • Even more curious is that Sen. Sanders’ new-found fondness for the Constitution …

      Here is how he fooled you.
      He never said he LIKED the constitution.
      He just said that confiscation goes against the constitution.

      The thing he didn’t say is that…..

      He and his comrades are going to get rid of the constitution.

  1. Or maybe Joy Behar got his ear…lie and tell them you aren’t going to take guns…but take the guns when you get elected..

    • This.

      As another TTAG user mentioned a couple of days ago, Bernie’s simply following Behar’s advice.

      Nothing to see here. Move along, move along.

  2. Won’t matter, he’s still got to beat Hillary/Biden/Bloomberg in a DNC admitted rigged primary. You’d think that little fact alone would turn a lot of liberals off from the DNC but, orange man bad, so click your heels and get in line, with Her. Again.

  3. This has always been Bernie Sanders’ position. He seems to know the strategic value of staying schtum, but he has always been clear and consistent about where he stands politically.

    He’s wrong about almost everything, but he has rare integrity; I hope he never becomes president, but unlike any of the other D candidates, he actually is worthy of some respect.

    • He’s a fixture in VT and knows how to blend right in. He was mayor of Burlington and knows how to work the state. I’m wondering why Howard dean never tried to unseat him

  4. Wait a minute…didn’t the old Bolsheviks tell the “big lie” about their Soviet Socialist paradise? Methinks comrade Bernie is just an old commie LIAR 😄😋😏

  5. Want to prove your respect for the 2nd, bernie? Address the house and senate and tell them to pass a law mandating constitutional carry nationwide.


  6. We need to remember he calls himself a democratic socialist. The 1st democratic socialist Was the Communist Vladimir Lenin. Bernie’s not stupid just a Communist. He realized that Stillwell and O’Rourke are out because of their rhetoric about the 2nd amendment. So he’s just playing his cards to get higher in the polls. Then he would do exactly what Joy Behar said, lie about it until he gets in.

  7. At the same event I believe AOC stated they were going to have a revolution. They are socialists, they admit that freely. A revolution is taking over and replacing the Constitution. They have been working on that for generations in the back room outside of view. Today they are open and honest about their goal.

    They are drawing the line in the sand, they want a revolution. They want two classes, the political class and the rest of us to support them.

    When the USSR was in full swing, very few from the west went to the “utopia ” of the socialist states. They were welcomed, no risk of life to enter and they were kept from seeing the reality of bread lines, lack of food and the general hopelessness of the people. People like Bernie were given a great time and did much to prop up the Kremlin. Contrast that with those who risked not only their lives, but the lives of their family and friends to escape to the West. If Socialism and Communism is so great, why did so many try to escape?

  8. “It means that I am going to walk into your house and take something whether you like it or not. I don’t think that stands up to constitutional scrutiny.” – Bernie Sanders

    So, does this logic apply to my hard earned income? Taking my money for universal healthcare and so that children can have free indoctrination at universities is still taking my property, and I don’t like it.

    • “So, does this logic apply to my hard earned income?”

      Your question will be answered when the new 1040S (Simple) is released (likely in time for 2019 tax filing). The form is a great departure from the past. After all the identification blocks, there are only two lines on the form:
      1) How much income did you receive in 2019?
      2) Send it in.

  9. They don’t fool me,all they want is to open the door wider as to get a bigger better foot hold to remove the 2nd Amendment, if they want to prove their self then pass laws that no constitutional rights can be changed from the way our forefathers wrote and signed, that’s what made America great not all these foolish laws that have been passed to destroy this nation, when something works and isn’t broken don’t miss with it,it doesn’t need fixing just followed with no exception.


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