Panic in Trumpville Over Gun Meeting
At one point, Mr. Trump suggested that law enforcement authorities should have the power to seize guns from mentally ill people or others who could present a danger without first going to court. ‘I like taking the guns early,’ he said, adding, ‘Take the guns first, go through due process second.'” Well, that is what did it. That comment caused an eruption out there, and not just among Trumpists.
I mean, there are some Never Trumpers who hate Trump, but they in no way… Their hatred of Trump still doesn’t mean they want the Constitution to be trampled. I mean, there’s a lot of people who got concerned. “What? (sputtering) ‘[G]o through due process second’?” So I found something today from Glenn Reynolds. Glenn Reynolds’ Web page is called Instapundit, and I occasionally traverse the hills and dales there, and I found a tweet by somebody named Tom Maguire. I don’t know who Tom Maguire is and I didn’t have time to Google “Tom Maguire.”
He’s probably somebody famous or he wouldn’t be posted here, but I don’t know who he is. No insult intended. Just full disclosure. He tweeted about this, and Tom Maguire at the Instapundit website said, “On Trump’s no ‘due process’ quote: [In my humble opinion] he misunderstood/misstated gun violence restraining order. Procedure is court order, confiscation, hearing to end or extend order.” Now, Trump said (paraphrased), “Screw that! Go get the gun and then we’ll have the court order and the hearing. We’ll do that later.”
What Tom Maguire thinks, according to his tweet, is that Trump conflated hearing to end or extend order with due process. So when Trump said take the guns first, go through due process second, Maguire’s tweet said that Trump didn’t mean due process, that he was confusing due process with the hearing to end or extend the order in the established procedure. So let me try to explain this. It’s tough to follow this when it’s words in a certain order and you can’t see them.
But that’s why I’m here, as a paramount communicator. The procedure now for getting a gun violence restraining order, if that’s what you want to do, you have to go to court and get an order, like the FBI went to the FISA court to spy on Trump. They had the dossier. You gotta go to court and get permission. You have to get a court order, a restraining order against a perp, and then you go get the gun. You go confiscate the gun. Then after you do that, there is a hearing in court to extend or end the court order allowing confiscation.
What Mr. Maguire believes is when Trump said, “Let’s take the guns first and go through due process second,” what he meant was that Trump was just conflating this hearing with due process, that Trump said, “Let’s go grab the gun and then go to court and argue it out.” It’s… (sigh) Well, it’s an attempt to explain it. But it relies on the belief that Trump doesn’t know the difference between a hearing and a court order and due process. What the critics are trying to say here is, “Trump, what are you…? Trump doesn’t care! Trump is an autocrat. Trump is a dictator.
Hmm, Rush didn't have time to Google "Tom Maguire"? Let me just say I was Number One once upon a time, having supplanted a dead Irish socialist, but now I see a dead IRA leader has the top spot. But maybe Rush has put me on the comeback trail!
Meanwhile, I'm still holding our for a re-tweet from the Real Donald Trump. Aim high!
BUT ENOUGH ABOUT ME: For background on Gun Violence Restraining Orders this WaPo piece is a good start. David French of National Review wrote a widely cited piece that picked up a tweet from Sen. Rubio.
The Little Marco That Could is introducing a package of reforms to our gun laws that will include Federal GVRO legislation. One might think that these court orders are handled at the state level, so what is the Federal role? If Sen. Rubio's bill mirrors the House proposal from last year, it will provide Federal grants to states that adopt legislation in line with the Federal standards.
But before you jump on board, do note the objections from Jacob Sullum of Reason. I was not persuaded - he offers hypothetical concerns, but we have a history to work with since Connecticut first passed their law in 1999 (OK, ask me about Newtown, amirite?). Other states such as California enacted legislation much more recently. If the parade of horribles envisioned by Mr. Sullum has been unfolding, we should be able to find out; if not, the hypothetical problems have not developed, yet anyway. Mr. French had his own response here.
I should add that the big impact in Connecticut, per a recent Duke study, has been to allow relatives to disarm elderly depressed, possibly suicidal gun owners. That does not speak to school shootings and it certainly opens a whole new can of worms around euthanasia and any suicide rights of the old and ailing, but it strikes me as a net positive.