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Trump Dodges Another Bullet

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Donald Trump
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Just two days after Saturday’s failed assassination attempt at a rally in Pennsylvania, former President Donald Trump has dodged another bullet.

On Monday, a district judge dismissed Trump’s classified documents case, citing the illegality of special counsel Jack Smith’s appointment as prosecutor in the matter.

In the 93-page option dismissing the charges, U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, West Palm Beach Division, agreed with defense attorneys that Smith’s appointment as special counsel violated statutory authority.

The Superseding Indictment is dismissed because Special Counsel Smith’s appointment violates the Appointments Clause of the United States Constitution,” the ruling stated.

The Appointments Clause requires that officers be nominated by the president and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. It further differentiates between courts deemed “principal” compared to “inferior” officers, and says that department heads may appoint inferior officers if Congress has passed legislation allowing them to do so.

“Up to this juncture, the Court has proceeded under the premise, advanced by Special Counsel Smith, that he is an ‘inferior Officer,’ not a principal officer requiring Presidential nomination and Senatorial consent,” the ruling further stated. “Defendants and the Meese amici contest this assertion, and it is a point worthy of consideration given the virtually unchecked power given to Special Counsel Smith under the Special Counsel Regulations. Ultimately, however, after examining the broad language in Supreme Court cases on the subject—and seeing a mixed picture, even if a compelling one in favor of a principal designation—the Court elects, with reservations, to reject the principal-officer submission and to leave the matter for review by higher courts.”

In the end, the judge was not able to deem Smith’s appointment as Special Counsel fell within constitutionally defined limits.

“Upon careful study of the foundational challenges raised in the motion, the Court is convinced that Special Counsel’s Smith’s prosecution of this action breaches two structural cornerstones of our constitutional scheme—the role of Congress in the appointment of constitutional officers, and the role of Congress in authorizing expenditures by law,” the ruling stated. “In the end, there does appear to be a ‘tradition’ of appointing special-attorney-like figures in moments of political scandal throughout the country’s history. But very few, if any, of these figures actually resemble the position of Special Counsel Smith. Mr. Smith is a private citizen exercising the full power of a United States Attorney, and with very little oversight or supervision.”

The case is just one of several that many Trump supporters have long considered to be nothing more than a political means to hurt the former president’s chances of winning the 2024 presidential race. While the verdict is still out on who will reside in the White House after this November’s election, this latest ruling was, indeed, another victory for the Trump team and his supporters throughout the country. It is also a boon for gun owners, who have a more Second Amendment-friendly candidate in Trump over Biden.

Secret Service Director Says All Is Well As Republican Gathering Set To Begin

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U.S. Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle

Amid widespread speculation of underperformance following Saturday’s attempted assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, the director of the U.S. Secret Service has released a statement to try to reassure Americans before the start of the Republican National Convention.

The statement, released Monday by Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle, said the agency had things under control on Saturday and will continue its diligence in protecting the former president.

“Secret Service personnel on the ground moved quickly during the incident, with our counter sniper team neutralizing the shooter and our agents implementing protective measures to ensure the safety of former president Donald Trump,” Cheatle said in the statement. “Since the shooting, I have been in constant contact with Secret Service personnel in Pennsylvania who worked to maintain the integrity of the crime scene until the FBI assumed its role as the lead investigating agency into the assassination attempt. I have also been coordinating with the protective detail for former President Trump and have briefed President Biden on the details of the incident.”

Cheatle said the Secret Service is working with all involved federal, state and local agencies to understand the assassination, how it happened and how we can prevent an incident like this from ever taking place again.

“We understand the importance of the independent review announced by President Biden yesterday and will participate fully,” Cheatle added. “We will also work with the appropriate Congressional committees on any oversight action.”

According to Cheatle, the Pennsylvania assassination attempt has led to many questions about Trump’s security—and the security of others—as the Republican National Convention kicks off this evening in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

“The U.S. Secret Service, in conjunction with our federal, state and local law enforcement and public safety partners, designs operational security plans for National Special Security Events to be dynamic in order to respond to a kinetic security environment and the most up-to-date intelligence from our partners,” she said. “I am confident in the security plan our Secret Service RNC coordinator and our partners have put in place, which we have reviewed and strengthened in the wake of Saturday’s shooting. The security plans for National Special Security Events are designed to be flexible. As the conventions progress, and in accordance with the direction of the president, the Secret Service will continuously adapt our operations as necessary in order to ensure the highest level of safety and security for convention attendees, volunteers and the City of Milwaukee.”

The attempt on Trump’s life in Pennsylvania has many convention attendees understandably more worried about safety than they likely would have been before Saturday’s shooting. But Cheatle says her agency has their backs.

“In addition to the additional security enhancements we provided former President Trump’s detail in June, we have also implemented changes to his security detail since Saturday to ensure his continued protection for the convention and the remainder of the campaign,” she concluded. “The Secret Service is tasked with the tremendous responsibility of protecting the current and former leaders of our democracy. It is a responsibility that I take incredibly seriously, and I am committed to fulfilling that mission.”

Let’s Not Give The Shooter What He Wanted

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Details are still coming out after an attempted assassination of former President Trump, but one thing we’re sadly already seeing are people on all sides trying to peddle the usual nonsense. Conspiracy theories, blaming broad swaths of societies for what one person ultimately did, and general hatred are already floating around. I know most readers here are better people than that, and I’m glad that I know that.

So, it’s us who are going to need to be the peacemakers and voices of reason right now.

I think the first thing we need to keep in mind is that people on different political sides from us are not some mysterious group of strangers out to get us. We all have that hippy liberal aunt who’s telling everyone about Project 2025’s fascist takeover at family dinners. We all have that uncle who talks about the downfall of western civilization, how Obama is running the show, and such. Would we wish harm on those loved ones we disagree with, though? Absolutely not.

The people on opposite sides might not be our loved ones, but they’re somebody’s crazy aunt or uncle.

I’m not going to preach absurdity here and say that there’s never a place for violence. Of course, legitimate self-defense is not only legal, but morally required of any decent person who loves their family and country. The same is true for fighting tyranny, as well. There IS a time and a place for violence, and it’s absurd to say words like “never” when discussing these topics, even when it sounds good at the time. But, we also must keep in mind what the Declaration of Independence has to say about the use of violence:

”Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

While we don’t know what the shooter’s exact motivations were at this point, it seems very likely that they were acting out of fear that Trump could become a dictator or buying into any line of dangerous rhetoric we’ve heard thrown around in this election season. We’ve seen this said by everyone from random people on social media to the mainstream media to even Biden himself. Naturally, one who truly believed that would want to take action to stop a tyrant from taking power, even if their fears may have been deeply misguided.

If that’s the case, a serious moral error was still made. Violence is only morally justified as a last resort, when all other options are either exhausted or unavailable. Assuming for the sake of argument that Trump will become a dictator if elected, it’s still July, and the election is in November. Further, Trump wouldn’t become president again until the end of January. All of that time gives ample opportunity for peaceful protest, legal action, and other options that fall far short of killing. So, there’s absolutely no moral justification for what happened this weekend. This was far from the time and place for violence.

I’m sure it’s tempting for many people who support Donald Trump to want to strike back, but we also need to keep in mind that this is probably what the shooter wanted. They had to know that killing Trump would result in backlash and possibly even a virtual civil war in our streets, and they may have been misguided enough to think that their side could win such a war (history pro tip: nobody wins a civil war). The job of good, moral people now is to prove such idiots wrong.

No matter who you support in the upcoming election, now is the time to work to win fair and square in a peaceful election. We need to show violent morons everywhere that America is better than them and that one idiot can’t make us descend into violence and chaos like Europe after Archduke Franz Ferdinand. We may have passionate differences, but we aren’t a violent and bloodthirsty people who go to violence at the first opportunity instead of a last resort.

To do that, all of us are going to have to keep pushing for free and fair elections, but we also need to work to keep those around us from getting crazy and joining the bazaar of immoral, premature violence. To do this, we need to remind people to not blame half of society, peddle unfounded conspiracy theories and otherwise inflame the tension. We need people to remember that the other side almost always includes some of our friends, family and other loved ones.

If America does descend into violence and stupidity, we need to make sure we at least tried to steer it toward peace and prosperity first. I think America as a whole is up for that job.

VA Official Says Agency Won’t Follow Law Protecting Veterans Gun Rights If Passed

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Veterans Day. US soldiers. US army. Military of USA. Memorial day.

Debate over federal legislation designed to protect veterans from having their gun rights infringed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs simply for having someone help them with their finances is getting contentious.

A U.S. House of Representatives hearing on Wednesday focused on the “Veterans Second Amendment Protection Act,” which would reverse the policy for reporting to the National Instant Criminal Background System (NICS)  when a veteran has appointed a financial fiduciary to handle his or her monetary affairs. The VA deems a veteran appointing a fiduciary to be mentally incompetent, barring them from purchasing a firearm as a result.

Veteran supporters and pro-gun advocates believe the VA reporting such an occurrence to NICS makes veterans in need of help less likely to ask for fear they’ll be denied their Second Amendment rights.

VA officials, however, vehemently disagree. And at the hearing, one said that if Congress should pass such a law, the VA would not comply with it.

According to a report at freebasenews.com, VA Deputy Undersecretary Glenn Powers testified that his department opposes the act. Additionally, he said the VA already provides a sufficient method for beneficiaries who have been reported to NICS to “petition for relief.”

“VA did not err in reporting, and if passed into law VA could not comply,” Powers said.

Of course, “petitioning for relief” after one has lost their gun rights isn’t what the Second Amendment is all about. “Shall not be infringed,” doesn’t mean “Infringe and then see if you can get your rights back.” It’s akin to unconstitutional “red-flag” laws that allow the government to confiscate weapons because of possibly baseless accusations, then make the gun owner go to court and prove they deserve to have their firearms returned.

Speaking of such laws, Powers also said the VA would oppose a forthcoming bill that would bar the VA from joining in support of “red-flag” laws, also called extreme risk protective orders (ERPOs). Powers said that legislation “places the security and safety of veterans their families and communities at risk and ultimately prevents VA from providing appropriate care for some of our most vulnerable veterans.”

Of course, the VA undersecretary’s declaration that the agency would not follow a law if legally passed by Congress didn’t set well with supporters in the House, including Rep. Matt Rosendale, R-Montana.

“Well, I’m glad everybody hears that on the record—that the VA is going to refuse to comply regardless of what we actually pass here,” Rep. Rosendale said.

Carry Laws Don’t Increase Gun Theft or Gun Crimes

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Concealed carry draw gun
Shutterstock

Gun control groups campaign against right-to-carry laws by claiming that guns carried in public pose a substantial threat to public safety, and that concealed carry permitting laws lead to more violent crime, not less. Giffords, for instance, alleges that “the dangers of permissive public carry laws” include an increase in gun thefts and “other undesirable outcomes,” with absolutely no counterbalancing public safety benefits.

Professor Carl Moody and Dr. John Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) have just released an updated paper, How Does Concealed Carrying of Weapons Affect Violent Crime? (May 31, 2024). These researchers examined information related to claims that carry concealed weapons (CCW) laws indirectly increase violent crime by driving up firearm thefts or by decreasing police effectiveness. Using a unique new data set that employs the number of permit holders as the variable of interest, the authors found no evidence that CCW laws are associated with significant increases in gun thefts or impact the effectiveness of police.

On gun thefts generally, an existing government source on how criminals obtain their firearms suggests that only a small amount of crime guns are acquired by theft. A Bureau of Justice Statistics report, Source and Use of Firearms Involved in Crimes: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016 (Jan. 2019) shows that only 6.4% of state and federal prisoners who had possessed a firearm during the offense for which they were serving time listed “theft” (burglaries, thefts from retail sources or a family/friend, or “other”) as their gun source.

Previous literature from the CPRC indicates that CCW permit-holders are unlikely to be violent criminals – in fact, as a class they tend towards the extreme opposite end of the law-abiding spectrum. In jurisdictions where information on crimes and permits is available, it shows that permit-holders are less likely to drive recklessly or under the influence than non-permittees, and permit-holders are “convicted of firearms-related violations at one-twelfth the rate of police officers.”

Professor Moody and Dr. Lott analyzed the theft question (whether CCW permit holders are a significant source of stolen guns beyond the amount expected due to the existing burglary rate) using variables that included the number of CCW permits (and a dummy variable for constitutional carry laws), the number of stolen guns, and the burglary rate as a control. “Stolen guns,” they conclude, “are apparently independent of CCW permits or permitless carrying.” The evidence revealed that neither the number of CCW permits nor the effect of constitutional carry laws had a significant impact on the rate at which guns are stolen. Constitutional carry states do not have significantly higher gun theft rates but, because most of the constitutional carry laws are relatively recent (since 2015), “it may be too early to draw any conclusions” on their impact.

The second issue examined was whether CCW permit-holders were associated with declines in police effectiveness, measured as the clearance rate of violent crimes. Variables included the clearance (arrest) rates and the number of crimes recorded for several given violent crimes types. Here, too, the analysis showed that “police effectiveness is unrelated to either the number of CCW permits and or existence of constitutional carry laws.”

These results confirm what many in the Second Amendment community know already – that despite all the spurious rationalizations advanced against lawful carrying, CCW permittees and others carrying responsibly are not the ones who threaten public safety or produce more crime.

—Courtesy of NRA-ILA

Providence or Luck? Trump Dodges a Bullet…Mostly

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AP Photo

Speaking to Fox News following the attempted assassination Saturday of former President Donald Trump, Israeli Special Ops veteran Aaron Cohen may have said it best.

“God must have been watching down on the president,” he said. “Snipers are typically trained to shoot into the cerebral cortex of the cerebellum at the top of the brain stem. It incapacitates you; it keeps your hands from moving… It’s about the distance of the shot. One hundred-thirty yards. That’s a putt. Anyone can put a two, two, three (.223), optic on a target from that distance and hit it. It’s not a difficult shot to make…”

Thomas Matthew Crooks, 20, of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, has been identified by law enforcement authoritiesas the attempted assassin. Since last evening, his home has been raided and already federal law enforcement and the media are doing a deep dive on who this misfit is, whose bullets grazed the president’s right ear, killed an innocent rally attendee and wounded two others, before Secret Service snipers took him out with a shot to the head.

Crooks had apparently crawled on top of a manufacturing plant an estimated 130 yards away from where Trump was speaking, a situation that has many security experts baffled as to how a man with a rifle could have openly crawled atop a building, got in position to shoot, and fired four to five shots at a crowded presidential rally before security neutralized the threat.

Map courtesy of NY Post

One self-described eyewitness interviewed by the BBC said he and his friends saw the man climb on top of the building, rifle visible, and tried to alert police who seemed “like they didn’t know what was going on” according to the man.

“We could clearly see the rifle,” the unidentified man said. “I was like, why is Trump still speaking why have they not pulled him off the state, I’m standing there pointing at him for like two or three minutes, Secret Service is looking at us from on top of the barn. I’m pointing at that roof, just standing there like this, and next thing you know, five shots ring out.”

He suggested Secret Service snipers may not have been able to see the shooter initially from the angle of the roof, but added, “Why is there not Secret Service on all of these roofs here? I mean this is not a big place.”

That’s a question a lot of people are asking and some important people are going to be asking. Crime scene investigators were still on the ground in Butler, Pennsylvania, where the assassination attempt took place and already a congressional oversight committee was demanding a hearing with Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle.

And already, conspiracy theories were flying on both sides of the political spectrum—left-leaning voices suggesting the assassination attempt was part of a right-wing plot to make Trump a hero, right-leaning voices alleging Biden had Trump’s security detail reduced to allow something like this to happen. None of the allegations have been founded in any way and for his part, President Joe Biden spoke with Trump in a conversation that was said to be one of concern and respect and then publicly decried the violence and said he was glad Trump was okay. World leaders were also quick to denounce the violence and wish Trump well.

Trump, miraculously, turned his head as he spoke as one of the would-be assassin’s bullets grazed his head when it struck his hear. Trump seemed to swat at his head, note the blood on his hand and dropped to a squat as Secret Service agents swarmed him. Then, in what has already become the most iconic image in election season history, as agents whisked a bloodied Trump off stage, he raised his fist to the crowd and mouthed the words, “fight, fight.” The images captured of the moment have the U.S. flag waving in the background.

Wall Street already says the incident has raised Trump’s chances of winning the presidency, while entrepreneurs on social media were quick to capitalize on the moment and were already selling t-shirts with the image on various platforms.

Gun Owning America is Larger Than Surgeon General Thinks…And They Don’t Agree with His Views

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There are many concerns with U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy’s recent declaration that “gun violence” is a public health “crisis.” First among them is that the voting public largely disagrees.

Two thirds of voters, or 66 percent, polled think that criminal misuse of a firearm is a criminal justice issue and not a public health issue. In other words, they see right through Surgeon General Murthy’s election-year announcement that “gun violence” should be treated as a public health matter.

After all, as NSSF has repeatedly pointed out, there is no medical treatment to stop a criminal from misusing a firearm. There’s no inoculation. There is no vector control to stop the spread of the disease of crime. There is, however, a criminal enforcement avenue.

NSSF polled over 2,000 voters from 49 of the 50 states. Seventy-three percent said they were very likely to vote on Nov. 5. They were evenly split. Half were women, and half were men. Thirty-six percent identified as Democrat and 35 percent said they were Republican, with 25 percent identifying as Independent and four percent saying they were unsure or preferred not to say. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.2 percent.

Healthy Skepticism

Surgeon General Murthy announced on June 25 a Surgeon General’s Advisory on Firearm Violence, declaring “firearm violence in America to be a public health crisis.” To do this, he re-hashed disproven talking points that firearms are the leading cause of death for children in the United States. He did this by including adults aged 18 and 19. This talking point has been debunked by several media outlets, including The Washington Post and Newsweek. When properly classified to include children through the ages of 17, motor vehicles are still the leading cause of death.

The Surgeon General’s announcement, especially one that’s based on misleading data, isn’t scientific evidence. It’s propaganda. That doesn’t seem to bother Surgeon General Murthy, however, who repeatedly ignores the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data that shows the 1994 Assault Weapon Ban – which also included a ban on standard-capacity magazines – showed no impact on crime reduction.

The polling revealed a healthy skepticism that Surgeon General Murthy is attempting to blur the lines of crime and public health to push a gun control agenda. Nearly half (49 percent) of the voters surveyed said that existing laws should be enforced instead of passing new laws. More than six out of 10 voters surveyed (61 percent) think the CDC should spend its budget studying actual viruses and diseases and should not spend money studying “gun violence.” Less than 40 percent of those voters polled also believe that the definition of “gun violence” should include accidents and lawful self-defense.

Those figures indicate that there’s a concern that public health officials are swerving out of their lane of preventing diseases to hindering Constitutional rights. They’re right to be concerned.

Surgeon General Murthy told the U.S. Senate in his 2021 confirmation hearing that he did “not intend to use my office as surgeon general as a bully pulpit on gun control.” At his second confirmation hearing, he told senators that declaring guns a public health crisis would not be his focus during a new term. Now that the election is closing in, Surgeon General Murthy is changing his diagnosis.

Prescribing Gun Control

Part of Surgeon General Murthy’s public health “emergency” prescription is to ban Modern Sporting Rifles (MSRs), standard-capacity magazines and institute universal background checks, which wouldn’t work unless there is a national firearm registry. That’s forbidden under current federal law. He calls for expanding licensing laws so that citizens must obtain permission to exercise the Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. He wants to restrict where law-abiding citizens can carry firearms, expand Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs), or “red flag” laws that lack Due Process protections and move the regulation of firearms from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, where “smart gun” mandates could be required.

That doesn’t comport to what voters surveyed want from the nation’s leading public health official. Sixty-six percent of those polled think the criminals misusing a firearm is a criminal justice issue, not one for doctors in white lab coats.

NSSF’s survey revealed that 68 percent of voters believe that personal protection is the top reason to own a firearm, even though just 36 percent of those voters polled said they own a firearm or live in a household with one. Of those who said they own a gun, over 62 percent believe that existing gun laws should be enforced instead of ginning up new ones, especially by unaccountable medical professionals.

Surgeon General Murthy’s election-year public health “emergency” declaration is clearly undermining the public’s trust in public health care. The voters are giving his declaration a vote of no confidence.

—Salam Fatohi, Courtesy of NSSF

BREAKING….ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT: Trump Shot in Head At Pennsylvania Rally, Raises Defiant Fist Before Secret Services Rushes Him Offstage

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AP Photo.

Early reports say former President Donald Trump was shot in an assassination attempt during a Pennsylvania campaign rally Saturday afternoon. Multiple shots could be heard off stage, and after the first couple, Trump grabbed his neck and fell to the ground. The Secret Service protective detail immediately swarmed him to shield him from additional shots.

After a cursory check, they allowed President Trump to rise to his feet. He stood, clearly bleeding from a wound to the side of the head, possibly the ear. The detail wanted to hustle him to safety, but he stopped them and raised a defiant fist while mouthing something to the crowd.

Of course, the crowd went wild.

As always, the media has to butcher the reporting. Here’s the NY Post’s “coverage”:

Former President Trump was shot in the side of the head on stage at a rally in an apparent assassination attempt.

What sounded like gunshots rang out just about five minutes into his speech shortly after 6 p.m., sending Trump to the ground as Secret Service agents jumped in to cover him. Sources said the investigation is ongoing and they are looking into if the shots were from a BB gun.

Sure. A BB gun.

For more serious reporting, ZeroHedge had this:

Donald Trump appears to have been shot during a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania. The former President could be seen grabbing his neck and then falling to the ground as the sound of shots rang out.

Trump was seen standing back up with blood on his face, and was led off stage by the Secret Service, who could be heard shouting “get down” during the incident.

Listen carefully to the communication between agents caught on the hot mic at the podium.

Notice the headline CNN about the “mostly peaceful assassination attempt.”

Boch screen capture of CNN.com at 6:35pm Saturday.

Most of the rest of the old guard media were reporting it as a “disturbance” or “loud noises.”

UPDATE:

AP says would-be assassin is dead, along with one rally attendee.

BUTLER, Pa. (AP) — Donald Trump’s campaign said in a statement that the former president was “fine” after a shooting at his rally in Butler, Pennsylvania. A local prosecutor says the suspected gunman and at least one attendee are dead.

“President Trump thanks law enforcement and first responders for their quick action during this heinous act,” spokesman Steven Cheung said in a statement. “He is fine and is being checked out at a local medical facility. More details will follow.”

The Secret Service said in a statement that “the former President is safe.”

Butler County district attorney Richard Goldinger said in a phone interview that the suspected gunman was dead and at least one rally attendee was killed.

Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, was showing off a chart of border crossing numbers during his last rally before the Republican National Convention opens Monday when the apparent shots began.

As the first pop rang out, Trump said, “Oh,” and grabbed his ear as two more pops could be heard and he crouched down.

Someone could be heard saying near the microphone at Trump’s lectern, “Get down, get down, get down, get down!” as agents tackled the former president. They piled atop him to shield him with their bodies, as is their training protocol, as other agents took up positions on stage to search for the threat.

Screams were heard in the crowd of several thousand people. The bangs continued as agents tended to him on stage.

Trump got to his feet moments later and could be seen reaching with his right hand toward his face. There appeared to be blood on his face.

The crowd cheered as he got back up and pumped his fist.

Here’s a video of a man who says he’s an ER physician who worked on one of the two wounded persons.  It starts at 43:56 in this Rumble video.

More:

UPDATE #2:

S&W Releases 2 More Pistols, the M&P 9 Shield Plus and SD40 2.0

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Smith & Wesson is on a roll this summer with new releases. Hot on the heels of the new Carry Comp pistols are two more new product drops for EDC pistols. This time it’s the SD40 2.0 and the M&P 9 Shield Plus with threaded barrel.

SD40 2.0

The SD series was Smith & Wesson’s evolution of the Sigma line. The Sigma was Smith’s Glock competitor in the days before the M&P line came along. By all accounts they were solid guns, although the triggers were nothing to write home about. The SD series, and the 2.0 version in particular, go a long way towards fixing that, as well as updating some of the ergonomics. The SD40 2.0 has a flat-face trigger that they call their Self Defense Trigger, which offers a smoother take-up, a crisp break and audible reset. They also added more aggressive slide serrations to make weapons manipulation more positive, while keeping the form factor the same so that existing SD holsters and other accessories still work with the pistol.

Smith & Wesson dropped the 9mm version late last year and now have released the .40 S&W version as well. I mentioned on the last .40 release from S&W that I was kind of surprised by that as the round seems to be on the decline, but I imagine Smith knows the market better than I do. Despite there being a lot of police surplus .40s out there, Smith is making sure fans of the caliber still have access to new guns, with modern features. They’re really affordable as well with an MSRP of only $349. I have to admit, I’m really kind of curious to check one out either in 9mm or .40. I still have a pretty good stash of .40 on hand from all of the years when that was my work caliber.

Caliber: 40 S&W
Frame Size: Compact
Weight: 22.7 oz
Width: 1.29 in
Height: 5.5 in
Capacity:14
MSRP: $349

M&P 9 Shield Plus with Threaded Barrel

The other new release is the M&P 9 Shield Plus with a threaded barrel. It has a 3.7-inch barrel with 1/2″-28 threading, an optics cut, night sights and comes with the new 15-round magazine to add to the current line-up of the M&P 9 Shield Plus. It also has a flat-face trigger, as well as a new enhanced grip texture and an 18-degree grip angle that S&W says allows for natural point of aim. It’s finished with an Armornite corrosion resistant finish and comes with 10-, 13- and 15-round magazines, which is a nice touch. Even though I need a better pistol caliber suppressor, I like seeing factory options for suppressor and optics ready guns. I know James Bond isn’t typically a Smith & Wesson guy (although he has used some S&W revolvers in the past), but I feel like a Shield Plus with a suppressor would make a great spy gun in case any Hollywood prop guys are reading this.

Caliber: 9MM
Frame Size: Micro-Compact
Weight: 20.3 oz
Width: 1.1 in
Height: 4.6 in
Capacity: 10,13,15
MSRP: $569

 

 

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Hawaii Bans Ammo For Those Under 21

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Hawaii Gov. Josh Green. Via Hawaii.com.

Young adults in Hawaii just lost the ability to buy ammunition for self-defense. Hawaii’s Democrat Governor Josh Green signed a bill banning ammo sales to anyone under age 21.  Clearly Josh Green can’t read the 2nd Amendment or Supreme Court decisions in Heller and Bruen or lacks the capacity to understand them.

Hawaii Public Radio shared the great news for their gun control loving readers:

Selling firearm ammunition to anyone younger than 21 years old is now illegal in Hawaiʻi.

On Tuesday, Gov. Josh Green signed a bill that sets the age limit for buying, owning or controlling ammo.

The measure notes that Hawaiʻi has some of the strongest gun safety laws in the United States and one of the lowest death rates per capita.

And they think making it harder for the law-abiding to procure ammunition to defend their homes and families will somehow contribute to fewer fatalities among the good people of the Aloha State?

But before this week, the state had not set a minimum age for buying and owning ammunition.

Nicole Nakasugi, a teacher on Oʻahu, brought this loophole to the attention of lawmakers after a student informed her about it.

“I also knew she had access to an unsecured firearm. So when she came to me with the knowledge that she had learned that there was no age restriction to purchase ammunition I was immediately concerned,” Nakasugi said.

Nanny state Karen alert.

“I did some research and discovered that while we have age requirements for purchasing weapons, there actually were no age requirements for buying the ammunition that goes with the weapons. If the ability to purchase firearms has an age requirement, it seems only logical that purchasing ammunition for those weapons should too,” she continued.

Except, that is, for the young adults living on their own who might want or need the right to keep and bear arms to defend their homes and families. But their lives somehow don’t count to the busybody Ms. Nakasugi.

Here’s her hint for the day:  Gun control disarms victims, not criminals.

SilencerCo Branches Out, Purchases Zev Technologies

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A top manufacturer and seller of firearms suppressors has jumped into a new market—the firearms market, to be exact.

On Thursday, SilencerCo announced it had acquired Zev Technologies, well-known maker of many Glock aftermarket parts and, lately, complete firearms. Both companies have a storied past.

SilencerCo was founded in 2008 and continues to focus on exceptional customer service and industry-leading products crafted by people with the utmost dedication to the firearms industry. The company’s mission is to bring products to the market that enhance the shooting experience.

Zev was founded in 2006 in Oxnard, California, and started out making aftermarket parts for Glock pistols. The company is known for its quality and innovation, and its triggers are considered the gold standard for competitive shooters worldwide.

To SilencerCo leaders, the recent acquisition of Zev is a match made in heaven.

According to a press release distributed by SilencerCo, both brands are excited to join together in their efforts to bring quality products to the firearms industry. The transaction is expected to close during the second half of July. Through the acquisition, SilencerCo plans to bring renewed focus to the Zev Technologies brand as Zev shifts away from its OEM operations while maintaining their headquarters in Centralia, Washington.

“We are very happy to align ourselves with such an innovative company as Zev Technologies,” SilencerCo CEO Jonathon Shults said. “We look forward to the launch of the FDP-9/FDC-9 in conjunction with Magpul and anticipate that product launch taking place later this year.”

The FDP-9 is a 9mm Folding Defense Pistol, while the FDC-9 is a Folding Defense Carbine also chambered in 9mm. Introduction of both has been highly anticipated for the past several months.

Moving forward, SilencerCo will focus on furthering Zev’s brand, along with bringing additional resources for Zev-specific product launches and innovation. With this direction, SilencerCo is confident that Zev will have more opportunities to flourish as a brand.

“Our team is excited for the future of Zev under this new acquisition,” said Taylor Goode, Zev Technologies president. “We look forward to working closely with SilencerCo to enhance both of our brands and product lines.”

BALDWIN WALKS! Judge Dismisses Shooting Death Case Against Actor

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Actor Alec Baldwin weeps in court after manslaughter charges against him were dropped.

In a surprise move late Friday afternoon, the judge presiding over the Alec Baldwin manslaughter trial dismissed the charges against the actor.

Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer dismissed the charges with prejudice, meaning Baldwin cannot be tried again for the killing of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the movie Rust back in 2021. “There is no way for the court to right this wrong,” Judge Sommer said in dismissing the charges.

Baldwin had been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the shooting of Hutchins, a charge the movie’s armorer, Hanna Guiterrez-Reed, was found guilty of back in March and sentenced to 18 months in prison. Hutchins was killed in October 2021 when Baldwin pointed a “prop gun” at Hutchins and pulled the trigger. The shot also injured the film’s director, Joel Souza.

According to numerous reports, Baldwin sobbed openly upon the judge’s surprise pronouncement.

The dismissal came after things went south for prosecutors during the proceedings on Friday. Long story short, the judge learned that the prosecution had failed to disclose some ammunition as evidence, which it was required to do.

“They buried it,” Luke Nikas, Baldwin’s lawyer said in court. “They put it under a different case with a different number.”

Earlier in the trial, prosecutors had painted Baldwin as a reckless person with little care for any of the tenants of safe gun handling.

“The defendant takes [the gun] out quickly the first time pointed—and you will hear witness testimony who will tell you the first time he does it his finger is on or around the trigger,” Special Prosecutor Erlinda Johnson told the jury. “He does it again. Takes it out very fast, points it, and once again you will hear testimony that his finger was on or around the trigger. And the evidence will

In the end, it was instead the prosecution’s reckless managing of evidence that resulted in dismissal of the case. Had Baldwin been convicted of the charge, he could have faced up to 18 months in prison, the same sentence handed to Guiterrez-Reed.

While criminal charges related to the matter cannot be brought back against the actor, there remains a tangle of civil suits in which the actor, his production company and insurance companies are still litigating.