Gun Rights

Martin O'Malley Attacks Bernie Sanders on Guns

A race to check off boxes on the Democratic side

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Generation Forward

Several Democrats have announced their candidacies for presidency. Those not named Hillary Clinton are trying, to varying degrees, to position themselves as not just a not-Hillary candidate but the not-Hillary or even anti-Hillary candidate. It's a hard-to-miss lesson from 2008—there's likely only room for one anti-Clinton candidate, as Barack Obama and John Edwards' trajectories in the 2008 primaries illustrated.

Almost seven months before the first primary, Sen. Bernie Sanders, a nominal independent from Vermont, has emerged as the first of the anti-Hillary Clinton candidates. He's the only candidate other than Clinton to hit an average of double digits in the polls—Vice President Joe Biden holds that distinction but he's not running yet, and hasn't sent out any signals that he will be either. And new polls in Iowa and New Hampshire from Bloomberg Politics show Sanders at 24 percent in both states. Clinton has 50 percent in Iowa and 56 percent in New Hampshire. Martin O'Malley, the former governor of Maryland, polls at 2 percent in both states.

In that context, Generation Forward, a super PAC supporting O'Malley, is taking out an ad buy aimed at Sanders, attacking the self-described socialist's record on gun control as not liberal enough. The Hill reports:

A super-PAC supporting former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) for president will launch a five-digit digital ad buy in Iowa on Thursday attacking Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) over his positions on gun control.

"Bernie Sanders voted against the Brady Bill, and Bernie Sanders voted to give gun manufacturers protections from victim lawsuits," the ad says. "The NRA even paid for ads attacking a Sanders opponent. Bernie Sanders is no progressive when it comes to guns."

Sanders himself has noted he received a D from the National Rifle Association, and says that describing him as anti-gun control is inaccurate. Nevertheless, he won his first Congressional race in 1990 against a Republican, Peter Smith, who had defeated him in 1988 but voted for an assault weapons ban in the meantime, earning the ire of the NRA, which spent money in Vermont to help defeat him.

Vermont, one of the most liberal states in the union, nevertheless has among the laxest gun laws on the books. It may be too much nuance for a liberal base that's become worryingly historically illiterate, but opposition to gun control comports with liberal values when those values are imbued with a healthy distrust of central authority, including government. There's, unsurprisingly, a racial component to this too—much of the contemporary gun control infrastructure was created in the 1960s as a response to fear of armed black people.

Today, O'Malley can shore up his bona fide liberal credentials by pointing to gun control laws he passed in Maryland that had the effect of ensnaring more people, mostly black men, into the carceral state. In the aftermath of the racially motivated massacre at a black church in Charleston, S.C., O'Malley was prepared to talk about gun control and black-on-black violence, but not racism.

O'Malley had a powerful influence of the treatment of black men when he was mayor of Baltimore too. According to Baltimore writer David Simon, the creator of HBO's The Wire, as mayor O'Malley helped create a police culture that devalued black life and treated young black men like targets for crime numbers. Simon still supports him says he'd still likely support O'Malley if he were the nominee because of his stance on issues like the death penalty and gay marriage. In Maryland, even fear of a black man armed with a knife has contributed to laws whose enforcement can lead to deadly encounters with police, as in the case of Freddie Gray. "Black Lives Matter" protesters demonstrated at O'Malley's campaign kick off last month, but none of the Democratic candidates, Clinton, Sanders, O'Malley, or the other(s) have even begun to address issues of police violence or the failure big government has been for black people, and white, in places like Baltimore and Detroit.

Watch Reason TV's interview with LEAP's Neill Franklin on how O'Malley helped create the Baltimore riots:

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  1. “opposition to gun control comports with liberal values when those values are imbued with a healthy distrust of central authority, including government”

    “opposition to monarchy comports with royalist values when those values are imbued with a belief in republican forms of government”

    1. Speaking of monarchs, sorry about how that whole Pope thing’s been working out for you Eddie. This has got to be a tough time for you.

      1. Bo, get out of my bushes, and take your binoculars with you!

  2. Bernie Sanders is no progressive when it comes to gun control.

    Who will out-derp whom?

  3. Gun Murders in the US (2010):

    Maryland: 12th

    Vermont: 49th

    1. Are you criticizing O’Malley’s safety record? I mean, look at how safe he made Baltimore!

      1. Oh look, Tulpa’s here trying desperately to pretend Bo is “real”. Again. Does being this pathetic come with any benefits, Tulpy-Poo? I mean, logic would state that it must, because you just keep getting more pathetic, so it must be of some value to you. I just can’t imagine what that is.

        Oh, and please, do one of your patented idiotic denials. I could use an afternoon chuckle.

        1. There’s something weird going on with the Rand Paul thread. Does he create really absurd right-wing sock puppets to play with sometimes?

          1. He creates all kinds, as we’ve seen. He’ll literally create any sockpuppet that he thinks he can get people to react to.

  4. Socialist moron attacks another socialist moron! Argle bargle hurrr durrrr HURRRRRRRRR!

  5. Bernie “Colonel Commie” Sanders…that is all I’m saying. What a puke.

    1. He’s actually the lesser of the two evils here. Let that set in

      1. That’s the scary part. I’ll give him one thing- at least he is honest about it. Rare in a politician/mugger.

        1. Still needs woodchipped…
          *the following statement is for humorous purposes only, I do not condone throwing socialists in a wood chipper collectively.

          1. But one at a time is OK?

            I can live with that….

            1. Clogged wood chippers can be dangerous man.

            2. You caught meh…

  6. none of the Democratic candidates, Clinton, Sanders, O’Malley, or the other(s) have even begun to address issues of police violence or the failure big government has been for black people, and white, in places like Baltimore and Detroit.

    No kidding.
    Also, you know whose name belongs on that list? Chris Christie; he’d make an awesome Dem candidate.

    1. As we stand on the brink of idiocracy I wonder if Americans would be able to elect a president as rotund as Christie. In this case, regardless of how little his physical girth has to do with anything on the issues, I would not look that gift horse in the mouth.

  7. Gun Murders (rate per 100,00 inhabitants)

    Maryland: 5.1 (4th)

    Vermont: 0.3 (51st – including DC)

  8. Come on team blue give in to your hate. Pick up your Banhammer and strike me down. Then charge that hill one more time…

    1. One the centennial of the First World War we could think of it as a re-enactment!

  9. Oh, almost forgot: also…..

    CRIPPLE FIGHT!!!!!

    1. A delicious one at that.

  10. Yay! I think it’s great if the Democrats end up with a litmus test issue like this.

    For so long, you couldn’t be a Republican nominee unless you were Pro-life, etc.

    That’s part of the reason the blue states became so much bluer. State and local politicians were guilty by association.

    So let the Democrats fight that kind of battle in middle America. Let the Democrat candidates defend their anti-gun platform in pro-gun states.

    See how well Democrat candidates do in bluing places like Texas after they’ve been vetted as passionately anti-gun.

    1. “so long, you couldn’t be a Republican nominee unless you were Pro-life”

      Er, that hasn’t changed has it?

      1. Not yet.

    2. It didn’t hurt Obama too bad.

      1. That was then.

        This may be an emerging litmus test.

        I sure hope so.

      2. Obama didn’t come out as a full hoplophobe until after his reelection. Immediately afterwards, but even so, he made a big show in 2008 of how he wasn’t going to deprive anyone of his guns because he was a uniter not a divider, etc. etc. The usual convincing lie that good politicians thrive on and that Hillary does so, so poorly.

        And always worth mentioning that it was the failure of his all-in AW ban that neutered him only a couple of months after the GOP loons were whining about how Obama was going to kill the Republican party by defeating a great statesman with huge popular appeal like Mitt Romney.

  11. Tommy Carcetti makes it big. VP would be Brother Mouzone, just for balance.

    1. What about Clay?

      1. I went back and forth on that one. Sheeeeeeeeeee-it.

        1. I imagine Clay would be Secretary of the Interior.

  12. Speaking of mendacious prog cunts, did anyone see Obama taking credit for the gay marriage progress yesterday?

    “When I became President, same-sex marriage was legal in only two states. Today, it’s legal in 37 states — (applause) — and the District of Columbia. A decade ago, politicians ran against LGBT rights. Today, they’re running towards them. (Applause.) Because they’ve learned what the rest of the country knows — that marriage equality is about our civil rights, and our firm belief that every citizen should be treated equally under the law.”

    Obama, in 2008:
    “That doesn’t mean that that necessarily translates into a position on public policy or with respect to civil unions. What it does mean is that we have a set of traditions in place that, I think, need to be preserved, but I also think we need to make sure that gays and lesbians have the same set of basic rights that are in place.

    “I don’t think marriage is a civil right.”

    1. His views on gay marriage evolved, much like his views on waging war in a half-dozen ME nations at any given moment.

      1. It’s Kinetic Military Action, get the talking points right.

      2. Oh, bullshit. His views on both are patently “I should say and do whatever I want to at any given moment.”

    2. They then proceeded to shout down some transgender rights activist and played the “not in my house” card, in absolutely hilarious fashion. I guaran-damn-tee you that if he was in office for another 6 years, his views on that would “evolve” as well.

      1. You mean he would change his name from Barack to Caitlyn?

        1. Graham might actually do that… Him and his First Ladies’ roundtable. Lazy Susan of First Ladies? Even if he doesn’t decide to do it himself, maybe Caitlyn would be one of the… Revolving Door of First Ladies?

      2. It might explain the mom jeans and his throwing like a girl.

    3. He’s so transformative he even turned Obama around on gay marriage.

      1. **narrows gays**

    4. Just like the economy (finally) pulling out of recession, “being their when it happens” = “I did it!” Unless it’s bad, then it’s somebody else who did it.

      That about summarizes is the Democratic evaluation of the Obama presidency. Ever the party of sophistication and nuance.

  13. Today, O’Malley can shore up his bona fide liberal credentials by pointing to gun control laws he passed in Maryland

    And he’s right. His bona fides consist on pointing out his stupidity with pride.

  14. O’Malley had a powerful influence of the treatment of black men when he was mayor of Baltimore too. According to Baltimore writer David Simon, the creator of HBO’s The Wire, as mayor O’Malley helped create a police culture that devalued black life and treated young black men like targets for crime numbers. Simon still supports him because of his stance on issues like the death penalty and gay marriage

    David Simon: So perceptive and yet so mind-bogglingly stupid at the same time.

    How does his head not explode from the sheer enormity of the cognitive dissonance he must carry?

    1. He grew up and went to school in a state that hasn’t put the Republican in charge in a generation, then went to work for a newspaper in the most Democratic city in one of the most Democratic states. He may be observant, but the portions of his brain dealing with critical thinking atrophied a long time ago.

    2. The Democrats invent new issues all the time for the purpose of giving leftists reasons to vote for them “because of this other thing he stands for.” Transgender equality was absolutely not even close to a thing 5 years ago. Gay marriage is dwindling. They need a new cause: transgender rights (an “issue” that affects about 100 people nationwide). Gun control is waning. Now it’s the confederate flag that’s the problem. They put in their Big Fix for healthcare, it’s going to be screwed up and single payer will be the only option.

    3. Simon’s problem is one that seems to be inherent to a lot of people who have similar views to him: it’s as if they’re allergic to looking at incentives, at why people really do things. He perceived the problems with cops, the longshoremen’s union, even the newspaper room. But you know what he didn’t do? Actually explore why there were problems. What are the incentives? What parts of human nature will be brought to the fore if you structure things this way?

      I think that people who tend to be “liberals” like Simon actually refuse to look at these things, because they might have to accept some things about human nature that they just don’t want to. They already absolutely hate certain portions of human nature (at least when anyone besides themselves expresses them), like greed, self-interest, desire for independence from the group, etc. If they are actually willing to look at how these things express themselves when certain incentives are present, then they would have to accept how humans are, and they just. Won’t. Do. That.

      They want man to be perfectible. It’s a chillingly anti-human sentiment. Because what it really means is they want to fundamentally change humans.

      1. Sure as I know anything, I know this – they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, ten? They’ll swing back to the belief that they can make people… better.

    4. Break that down a little bit more. He helped create a racist culture that kept black men in a cycle of crime and poverty.

      On the plus side, the state will stamp a marriage certificate for gay couples and some death row inmates will get life instead.

      I’m pro gay marriage and anti death penalty, but how many more lives are more severely harmed because of his drug war than improved because of his other positions?

      1. I thought the confederate flag was the whole problem?

  15. It may be too much nuance for a liberal base that’s become worryingly historically illiterate, but opposition to gun control comports with liberal values when those values are imbued with a healthy distrust of central authority, including government.

    What definition of liberal are we using here? I mean, the first part is accurate for current liberals, but current liberal values are all about central authority.

  16. You know, there are things that people can do to lower the likelihood of gun deaths and negligent discharge. Things like, participating in firearm safety training classes, regular practice at the range, teaching children about the safe handling of firearms at an appropriate age, building positive social networks around firearm safety (range buddies), and so on. These practices are highly correlated to lowering the likelihood of gun violence, especially in places where firearm ownership is common.

    It’s too bad there isn’t a membership-based non-profit organization that is dedicated to firearm safety, sportsmanship, and shooting skills. This type of organization could be very successful at preventing gun violence.

    1. No matter how many programs you make available to them, animists will not go to them. They are afraid of the object–of the gun–itself. They actually conceive of it as sort of “alive” and imbued with evil and evil powers, like the ability to cause you to go on a shooting rampage.

      People who are animists and are terrified of guns will never go into a room with a bunch of them. It would be, for you, like going into a room full of Wartys*.

      * (sometimes he creates timecopies of himself for the bigger orgies, so this is actually possible)

      1. Timecopies? He’s his own father???

        1. If only it were that simple. I’d explain it to you, but the last person Warty explained it to went insane.

          (cackles maniacally, makes insane gestures)

      2. “They are afraid of the object–of the gun–itself. They actually conceive of it as sort of “alive” and imbued with evil and evil powers, like the ability to cause you to go on a shooting rampage.”

        You know, in laying out the rules of cop safety, I’ve come to realize that cops basically are the weapon of choice for the collectivist left. Their “guns” are literally alive, and do basically hunger for the day they will kill someone, so it’s sort of understandable that they mistakenly apply the same properties to the weapons of the people.

        1. I have yet to meet anyone who hasn’t been moved by a day at the range. There should be an annual “take your progressive friend shooting” day. One hour shooting a nice .22Lr rifle with a good scope will convert anyone. Anyone.

    2. Buy your kid a bb gun. Good hand-eye coordination boost, easy way to teach firearm discipline/respect with very little possible negative outcome (barring some Christmas Story-esque fluke). Stigmatizing something is a really great way to get people to use it inappropriately.

      1. First some pro-liberty books, then the BB gun, then the wood chipper

        1. Call of the Wild, Lassie Come Home, the Great Brain series, Cronicals of Narnia, all great pro-liberty kids books (grades 2-8). A BB rifle is great, I’d say starting at age 4. But the wood chipper should wait until the teen years; “don’t give them a wood chipper until they can tie a tourniquet” I always say,.

    3. You know, there are things that people can do to lower the likelihood of gun deaths and negligent discharge. Things like, participating in firearm safety training classes, regular practice at the range, teaching children about the safe handling of firearms at an appropriate age

      Even this is bullshit.

      Dad had a handgun- I found it in the third drawer down of his dresser- when I was 3. He had a rifle- back of the closet on the left- The ammo was top shelf of the same closet. Found both when I was 4.

      And nothing else happened…

  17. “Bernie Sanders is no progressive when it comes to guns”. Why is O’Malley being so nice to his opponent?

  18. Dim socialist decries higher American standard of living and attacks variety in deodorant choices as evidence of Americans’ venal nature?

    Quick, attack him on RKBA! That’s always been a sure-fire political winner for Democrats.

  19. New respect for Bob Beckel?

    Beckel, who joined the network in 2000, had entered rehab therapy for his addiction to prescription pain medication in April. His last appearance on the network was Feb. 16, more than four months ago. News of his departure from Fox was first reported by Mediaite.

    Fox News has officially dropped “The Five” co-host Bob Beckel from the network, saying the show could no longer be held “hostage” to his personal issues.

    1. Beckel was the best thing about The Five

      1. Was Gutfeld a regular on The Five or just a guest?

      2. Beckel was the best thing

        Said no one. GG ate his lunch on just about every topic.

  20. OT: The Second Nut Punch Today Courtesy of SCOTUS:

    HOUSING CASE LETS FEDS TARGET ‘UNCONSCIOUS’ RACISM

    “Like the opinion in King v. Burwell, in which the Court effectively rewrote the plain language of the so-called Affordable Care Act, in Texas Housing the 5-4 majority decided that Congress had allowed claims of housing discrimination to be brought based on population statistics, when in fact it has never done so.

    “Now, plaintiffs do not need to show there was actual racial discrimination, or an intent to discriminate. Instead, they can just point to the racial makeup of a neighborhood and infer that discrimination must have happened in order to bring a lawsuit and force communities to re-engineer themselves.

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-g…..us-racism/

    1. Kennedy delivered this one.

      Again I ask: When are we going to start term limiting these bastards?

      1. Technically, they can be impeached, which really wouldn’t be a difficult thing if congress had the balls to do so and had strong majorities in both chambers.

        1. In the preamble, Article III states “The judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behavior?”

          Under the impeachment provision in Article II, good behavior is defined as “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

          Impeachment doesn’t address what happened twice today. How do we effectively address the judicial tyranny in our highest court?

          1. Valid point. The problem with term limits is, even if staggered, it grants extra authority to the executive. As it stands, a President rarely has the opportunity to appoint a Justice to the SC. That would be far more frequent and strongly shift checks/balances from the judiciary to the executive, and I still believe the executive to be the most dangerous.

            1. Some presidents have never nominated a supreme (Carter), other have selected one or two (Obama), while others even more (Eisenhower nominated 5). I am not sure that having a slightly greater opportunity to nominate a justice or two shifts the balance of power to the executive.

              But, how is this significantly different from what happened today with SCOTUScare? The law should have been sent back to the legislative to fix it. Instead Roberts allowed the court to assume the power of the legislature to run defense for the executive. He made a political decision and we deserve better.

              In other words, the constitutional firewall is breached and there has got to be a way to address an out-of-control judiciary.

            2. Yeah, at worst, SCOTUS is usually just rubberstamping the terrible bullshit of one branch or another.

          2. What is that Georgia address linked in your handle?

            1. Just trying to save the feds time.

            2. Huh. I am not seeing what you are describing….

              1. WW

                https://reason.com/5385 Peachtree Dunwoody Rd

          3. Secession.

    2. And I’m sure this principle will be duly applied to black, hispanic, Indian, Chinese, and other ethnically homogeneous neighborhoods?

      Btw, I’m beginning to think the supreme court has outlived it’s usefulness.

      1. That happened with Wickard.

  21. Today is one of my favorite days of the year. It is the 139th anniversary of one of the greatest days in American history:

    Little Big Horn.

    Here’s a shout out to some real heroes like Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull, and Two Moons.

    The Sioux, Cheyenne and Northern Arapaho proved, at least on that day, that the Leviathan can be whipped.

    1. You know the difference between Colonel Custer and Captain Morgan?

      Captain Morgan is still killing Indians*

      *Because I am Sioux, I can tell this joke… It’s not Rayciss

    2. I think Battle of the Greasy Grass has more of a ring to it.

    3. I think Battle of the Greasy Grass has more of a ring to it.

    4. I think Battle of the Greasy Grass has more of a ring to it.

    5. I think Battle of the Greasy Grass has more of a ring to it.

      1. Hey I only clicked the submit button thrice not quattro.

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  23. We need to have moar guns in the hands of sociopaths to keep us safe from guns. Sociopaths can not only force us to eat broccoli, they can call dog shit “broccoli”. And you’re a racist if you disagree.

  24. “It may be too much nuance for a liberal base that’s become worryingly historically illiterate, but opposition to gun control comports with liberal values when those values are imbued with a healthy distrust of central authority, including government.”

    It’s not that liberals [specifically those of a “progressive” nature] are opposed to central authority; they just want to be the authority and impose their agendas on everyone else. Because, of course, they are morally right about everything [yes, sarcasm intended].

  25. They should attack each other with guns. I mean a duel. That way, only one of these horrible east coast statist shit heads are left.

  26. Guns are always a winning issue for Democrats. They should spend more time on it.

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