Today’s Libertarian Party is not the same party your father knew. The party known for promoting civil liberties, minimal government regulation (including ending drug laws), free market capitalism and the end of welfare seems to have wavered in its original mission. This election cycle, the Libertarians have enjoyed extra support with all of the early “Never Trump” talk. More people have looked into the Libertarians, but not everyone – especially gun owners – likes what they’ve found.
First, The People Of The Gun are concerned about the ticket’s anti-gun vice-presidential nominee, gun-hating former Massachusetts Governor William Weld. Then we learn they’ve welcomed a Moms Demand Action spokeswoman as their Delaware Campaign Chair.
Now, the head of the Cato Institute – a libertarian think tank – has come out in support of gun control. What in the world is going on among the Libertarian Party? Have they sold their souls to the devil in exchange for a shot at some power in Washington D.C.?
Vice-President William Weld?
Former Massachusetts Governor William Weld claims he’s solidly pro-gun. His actions, both while in office and since, tell a far different story.
He’s come out supporting gun bans for people on secret government lists. He’s called America’s favorite rifle, the AR-15, a “weapon of mass destruction.” He’s supported gun rationing and hinted for the abolition of handgun ownership. He says those handguns are an even bigger problem than modern sporting rifles.
Libertarian VP Candidate William F. Weld Continues to be Anti-Gun
As governor of Massachusetts, William Weld supported various gun control schemes, including a ban on semi-automatic firearms. Unfortunately, and despite being the Libertarian candidate for vice president, Weld continues his anti-gun ways.
In July 2016, while NRA and other groups concerned with civil liberties were hard at work fighting legislation that would have stripped Americans of their Second Amendment rights without due process based merely on their placement on a secret government watch list, Weld expressed support for such measures.
In an interview with the Washington Post Editorial Board, Weld said of watch list gun control legislation:
I think the Susan Collins stuff looks good. I mean, it’s hard for me, uh, having proposed this super-duper task force getting bits of information from all over to say, it wouldn’t lie with good grace in my mouth to say ‘no, don’t use the terrorist watch list as a source of such information.’ So I would go with that.
In an August interview with Revolt.tv, Weld reiterated this position. When asked about what can be done “to control this flow of guns,” Weld responded, “you shouldn’t have anybody who’s on a terrorist watch list be able to buy any gun at all.”
At another point in the interview Weld characterized commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms and standard-capacity magazines as potential weapons of mass destruction. Displaying a level of ignorance usually attendant to politicians carrying the endorsement of the Brady Campaign, Weld told the interviewer:
The five-shot rifle, that’s a standard military rifle. The problem is if you attach a clip to it so it can fire more shells and if you remove the pin so that it becomes an automatic weapon. And those are independent criminal offenses. That’s when they become essentially a weapon of mass destruction.
Weld went on to suggest to the interviewer that both handguns and AR-15s are a “problem,” stating, “The problem with handguns is probably even worse than the problem of the AR-15.”
Moms Demand Action spokeswoman as Delaware State Campaign Chairwoman?
Yes, Gary Johnson almost tripped over himself appointing Melissa Joan Hart, a Hollywood pop tart and Moms Demand Action spokeswoman as his Delaware Campaign Chair.
Melissa Joan Hart, star of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Melissa & Joey, and Christian-right drama God’s Not Dead 2, has just been appointed the Connecticut chairwoman of the 2016 presidential campaign of Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson.
“I want to break away from this two-party system and I think it’s important for people to know that there’s another candidate out there who really toes the line between Democrat and Republican,” Hart, who has a residence in Connecticut, told People. “I mean he’s libertarian. But socially he’s liberal, but fiscally conservative … [Johnson] was on a border state, so if you want to talk about immigration, he’s the guy.”
Here’s the story about her and her role as spokeswoman for Moms Demand Action and a plug for her gun control video on Facebook.
Cato Institute head supporting gun control?
Bringing the Libertarians full circle in their support for government intrusion into civil liberties is Robert Levy, head of the libertarian think tank The Cato Institute. In a new initiative, he’s pitching gun bans, magazine bans, and the end of the private sale of firearms without the government’s blessings.
From the horse’s mouth at the Cato Institute:
Gun Control: Grounds for Compromise?
By Robert A. Levy
…1. Assault rifles.
…That said, some weapons can be banned. For example, automatic weapons have, for all practical purposes, been banned since 1934. But banning popular semi-automatic rifles, merely because they have a military-type attachment that doesn’t affect their lethality, makes no sense. The task, therefore, is to identify semi-automatic weapons that are not commonly used and not needed for lawful purposes. The 1994 Assault Weapons Ban went too far, but a more limited version might be viable.
2. High-capacity magazines.
…To my knowledge, no actual or potential (civilian) victim has fired dozens of rounds in self-defense. Perhaps that suggests a ban on magazines with more than, say, 20 rounds.
3. Universal background checks.
…It may be time to revisit and, if necessary, fine-tune Manchin-Toomey.
Robert Levy is chairman of the Cato Institute.
Just yesterday there’s news of a jewelry store owner in Texas who faced off against four armed robbers. Dozens and dozens of rounds were fired and the store owner was darn glad he had an AK-47 rifle on hand to save his life and the lives of other innocents. Robert Levy must not read the news or know how to use Google.
Imagine what would have happened if the jewelry store owner – who had been robbed at gunpoint before – had been holding a daisy instead of that rifle.
So today’s Libertarians appear willing to sell their souls to the devil to finally get a seat at the table in Washington. Keep that in mind when you step into the voting booth in November, or the next time you get a phone call or email from the Cato Institute asking you for financial support. Given all the enthusiasm for gun control among ostensibly Libertarian leadership, is it any wonder why the Libertarian Party continues on its path of insignificance and irrelevance?