Donald Trump has repeatedly accused his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton of stripping away gun rights.
The GOP nominee’s stance on gun control hasn’t been very clear in the past and he has reversed his positions on the issue in recent years.
One thing Trump’s 2016 presidential platform is clear on is protecting the rights of gun owners and preventing any legislation that impedes their right to bear arms.
The Republican candidate has railed against Clinton’s proposals to tighten gun laws and impose certain restrictions on firearm sales.
Here’s where Donald Trump stands on gun control:
Trump asserts that an “overwhelming majority of people who go through background checks are law-abiding gun owners” and that too many states fail to properly put criminal and mental-health records into the database system.
The GOP nominee wants to focus on fixing defective gun legislation already in place, instead of expanding on it in order to avoid infringing on the Second Amendment rights of Americans.
“What we need to do is fix the system we have and make it work as intended. What we don’t need to do is expand a broken system,” Trump says on his campaign website.
During the first presidential debate the GOP nominee called for “law and order” and recommended using the controversial stop-and-frisk law implemented in New York, which allows police to randomly stop pedestrians and search them for weapons, in order to remove guns from the hands of criminals.
In 2013, a New York judge ruled stop-and-frisk unconstitutional after it found that the law discriminated against African Americans.
Trump asserted that the law helped curb gun-related violence and that crime has spiked since the law’s removal. But data indicates that crime as whole actually fell nearly 8% between 2013 and 2016.
Previously Trump suggested stop-and-frisk should be rolled out nationwide, but later walked back his statement and clarified it should be used in high-crime areas such as Chicago.
Trump claims legislation banning semi-automatic rifles and large magazines has been “a total failure,” failing to keep guns out of the hands of violent criminals. As such, he opposes restrictions on assault-weapon sales.
“Law-abiding people should be allowed to own the firearm of their choice. The government has no business dictating what types of firearms good, honest people are allowed to own,” Trump’s platform notes on his website.
The GOP nominee appears to have changed his position on assault weapons since writing his book “The America We Deserve” in 2000. In it Trump wrote, “I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun,” PolitiFact notes.
Trump recanted his statement during a debate in March when he was asked if he supported the ban, saying: “I don’t support it anymore. I do not support the ban on assault weapons.”
In May, Trump received an endorsement from the NRA, despite formerly supporting gun control. He has made no statements on the “Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.”
Trump has called for expanding mental-health treatment programs as well as “fixing” our “broken” mental-health system that has allowed “red flags” to slip through the cracks. And while he has called for getting violent people “off the streets,” he argues that regulations inspired by shooting incidents involving the mentally ill often penalise gun owners in the aggregate.
‘And why does this matter to law-abiding gun owners? Once again, because they get blamed by antigun politicians, gun-control groups, and the media for the acts of deranged madmen,” Trump said.
Trump has been unclear about how he would “fix” the mental-health system.
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