Presidential candidate Cory Booker clarified on his mandatory so-called “assault weapon” confiscation plan in a recent interview with CNN.
Booker said in another interview that he supports legislation that would put owners of “assault weapons” in jail if they don’t turn them over in a government buyback program.
He was asked how would he get the assault weapons away, he answered: “you have to set up a system, yea, that is mandatory.”
The second amendment, which states: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed,” was originally ratified in 1791 after Americans had just used guns to ward off British imperial domination. It was created with the intention to protect freedom. It is crucial in ensuring a free state and gives citizens the opportunity to defend themselves against a potentially tyrannical government.
Booker continued saying in the CNN interview that, “this idea, the imagery that the fearmongers and demagogs try to say of somehow, armed police officers showing up and confiscating weapons, that’s the fearmongering.”
A Twitter user wrote in the comment section of the video of that interview, “Every law, ultimately, is enforced at the point of a gun. In this case that interaction is likely to be more immediate than most.”
Another Twitter user commented in the same thread, “If he’s talking specifically about banning mythical ‘assault weapons’, it’s a non-story, as those don’t exist. Nor are legitimate assault rifles generally legal to sell to US citizens.”
Corey Booker was asked earlier this year on another CNN interview with Poppy Harlow, “[Eric Swalwell is] proposing a buyback program where Americans who currently have those guns could sell them essentially to the government, but if they don’t, within a certain period of time, they would be prosecuted … thrown in jail, perhaps. Are you supportive of the same measure?”
Booker didn’t answer the question directly and Harlow asked again, “but would you prosecute people? Do you support the government buying them back and if not, potentially people could go to jail if they don’t want to sell them back, yes or no?”
Booker answered: “We should have a law that bans these weapons and we should have a reasonable period in which people can turn in these weapons.”
Other Democrats Pushing Mandatory Buybacks
Another Democratic presidential hopeful, Beto O’Rourke said in the democratic debate of Sep. 12, “Hell yes! we’re gonna take your AR-15, your AK-47.”
O’Rourke has endorsed confiscating guns, though he claimed this week that such a plan would not require police officers going “door to door.”
Pressed on how he’d enforce the plan if it were passed, he replied, “How do you—how do we enforce any law? There’s a significant reliance on people complying with the law. You know that a law is not created in a vacuum.”
O’Rourke’s declaration on Thursday clashed with his own words from last year when he said during an appearance on KFYO: “If you purchased that AR-15 if you own it, keep it. Continue to use it responsibly.”
Former presidential candidate Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand says she is in favor of a mandatory federal buyback of assault weapons. Moreover, if the owners of assault weapons don’t sell their firearm back to the government, they could be criminally prosecuted.
“I think we should ban assault weapons as well as large magazines, and as part of passing that ban, do a buyback program across the country so that those who own them can be … compensated for their money that they spent. But I think both of those ideas are strong,” Gillibrand told Poppy Harlow of CNN.
“You don’t want people to retain them because if you make them illegal, you don’t want to grandfather in all the assault weapons that are all across America,” Gillibrand said. “You would like people to sell them back to the government so that you can make sure people who shouldn’t have access to these weapons couldn’t have them.”
“The point is, you don’t want people using assault weapons, and so the point is if you are arrested for using an assault weapon, you’re going to have an aggravated felony,” she said. “I mean, the whole point is when you make it a crime to own an assault weapon, then if you are found using it, that would be the issue.”
According to supporters of the second amendment, the mandatory assault weapons buyback rhetoric is a dress up for gun confiscation.
Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) said that she was willing to send police officers to people’s homes to confiscate firearms banned through so-called red flag laws or other avenues.
“When I was attorney general [of California], and we put resources into allowing law enforcement to actually knock on the doors of people who were on two lists—a list where they had been found by a court to be a danger to themselves and others,” she told the Washington Examiner.
Former Vice President Joe Biden said that, if he were elected, he would push for a “national buyback programs” to get assault weapons “off the street.” He didn’t specify what he meant by assault weapons.
Biden was asked by CNN host Anderson Cooper about people worrying Biden would be coming for their guns.
“Bingo! You’re right if you have an assault weapon,” Biden responded, before adding: “The fact of the matter is [assault weapons] should be illegal. Period. The Second Amendment doesn’t say you can’t restrict the kinds of weapons people can own. You can’t buy a bazooka. You can’t have a flame-thrower.”
The Epoch Times reporter Zachary Steiber contributed to this report.