No Great Surprise

Biden’s Blanket Endorsement As Gun Conference Looms
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President Joe Biden recently picked up a literal “blanket endorsement”
from several gun control lobbying groups for his 2024 re-election run.
(Official White House portrait, public domain)

In politics, as well as business, timing is everything, so let’s take a look at current events and test the theory.

Last month, in something of a first, it seems like every gun prohibitionist lobbying group on the map joined together to endorse Joe Biden for re-election in 2024. This is quite possibly the biggest non-surprise in recent political history, and it tells us something important. Gun grabbers, as my pal Alan Gottlieb at the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) calls them, are dead serious about keeping their guy in the White House for another four years.

Adding to the mix, just about this time last month, CNN was reporting how the president would be making an announcement right after Labor Day about how gun control would be a centerpiece in his campaign over the next 14 months. By now, if CNN was right, we should know what this was all about. It was supposed to include expanding the definition of what a firearms dealer is, and whether active gun traders and/or buyers and sellers should have a federal firearms license. There was more mentioned, and none of it was good news for gun owners.

Another talking point was supposed to be expanded background checks, or so-called “universal background checks,” which translates to more red tape and inconvenience for honest citizens and no problem at all for criminals who simply bypass background checks. There was some question about whether Biden could do this without legislation, which would likely be DOA on Capitol Hill, with an election year looming.

What really makes this interesting is — as I mentioned right up front — is the timing. The weekend of Sept. 22-24, the 38th annual Gun Rights Policy Conference will unfold in Phoenix, Arizona. Would anyone care to bet what and who will be the main subjects of discussion during that lively 72-hour gathering?


Alan Gottlieb created the Gun Rights Policy Conference 38 years ago.
It has grown to be an important grassroots event.

What is the Gun Rights Conference?

For the past 38 years, gun rights advocates and grassroots activists from across the country have gathered at some hotel in some city for a weekend of panel discussions, reports, networking, socializing and learning about Second Amendment issues from the top names in the gun rights movement.

The Gun Rights Policy Conference (GRPC), which is co-hosted by the Second Amendment Foundation and CCRKBA, is something of a “Who’s Who” event. Over the years, it has attracted leaders from virtually every gun rights group on the map. We’re talking NRA, GOA, National Shooting Sports Foundation, SAF and CCRKBA, of course; Illinois State Rifle Association, California Rifle & Pistol Association, Gun Owners Action League of Massachusetts, Washington Arms Collectors, Florida Carry, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association and so many other groups it’s impossible to name them all.

GRPC was and remains the brainchild of the aforementioned Alan Gottlieb. Unlike a National Rifle Association convention, this event was designed to always be an educational gathering. It is oriented toward grassroots activism, and over the past couple of years, features have been added.
Last year, there was a day-long legal symposium which drew several attorneys who are getting deeply involved in Second Amendment litigation. In conjunction with the conference, there has been a gathering of bloggers and podcasters.

The first one of these gatherings was held in Bellevue, Washington, and I was there. It was, from a journalist’s perspective, one of those rare opportunities to listen and get an understanding of how the most energetic folks in the gun rights movement talked and thought. Things haven’t really changed much; the faces, of course, but not the philosophy. If you want to understand gun rights from the ground up, this little soiree is just what you need.

Among this year’s confirmed speakers will be American Handgunner and GUNS Magazine columnist Massad Ayoob, who happens to also serve as president of the SAF. He will be joined by radio legends Tom Gresham (SAF Board of Trustees) and Mark Walters (CCRKBA Board of Directors), SAF and CCRKBA leader Alan Gottlieb, SAF Executive Director Adam Kraut, journalist John Fund and many others. A full program should be available online within days right here.


Massad Ayoob is no stranger to readers of American Handgunner and GUNS magazine. What many don’t know is that he is the president of the Second Amendment Foundation.

Only twice has the event been totally online — during the COVID-19 pandemic — and the virtual GRPC events were viewed online by tens of thousands of people.

Panel discussions frequently involve politicians, academics, attorneys, writers, historians, firearms trainers, and local activists.

There are two receptions, one Friday evening and the other Saturday evening. Saturday’s agenda runs from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and includes an awards luncheon. Sunday’s agenda runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

For those unable to attend, the sessions will be live-streamed, and you should be able to hook up by visiting the SAF website.


Who Backs Biden?

Returning to endorsements for the president, it’s a veritable Rogue’s Gallery of gun control extremists.

The lineup includes Everytown for Gun Safety, the Brady Campaign, Moms Demand Action, Students Demand Action, Team Enough, Community Justice Action Fund, and Giffords. Would you believe it, Spectrum News identifies this bunch as “gun safety groups.” (If you ever want to have a little fun, ask representatives from any of these groups how many certified “gun safety” instructors they have, where they offer “gun safety” courses and what kinds of guns they personally own.)

When CNN announced Biden’s campaign plans, the report said he would “make gun safety a central issue of his reelection campaign.” What’s he going to do, encourage people to take an NRA home firearms safety course?

The courts have lately been unkind to gun control, but not entirely hostile. After U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor in Texas ruled ATF overstepped its authority in writing a “new rule” on parts kits — the so-called “ghost guns” — the Supreme Court reversed and allowed the rule to stand, at least while the actual case makes its way through the lower courts.

Hunter Biden’s so-called “sweetheart deal” on drug charges and alleged gun law violations was derailed by a judge several weeks ago, so that could come up during the campaign. There was a strange silence from the gun control crowd when Hunter’s “deal” on the gun law violation was announced. Hey, if it weren’t for the double standard, the Left would have no standards at all.

But these people vote, so we better vote, too.


Fatal Choice

An Indiana man made the fatal mistake of apparently driving into the front yard of a couple in the Salem area, then pulling a gun on the male homeowner, according to Fox News.

It was his bad luck the man’s wife was inside. She grabbed her own handgun and shot the suspect — identified as 45-year-old Michael Chastain — fatally. Chastain reportedly had previously dated the couple’s daughter, but she no longer lived at her parents’ home, so it’s not clear why he went there in the first place. It turned out to be the last place he visited, not counting the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Chastain reportedly had a criminal record.


Limping to Jail?

There’s a 23-year-old guy in Hammond, Louisiana, who may be limping into court shortly, thanks to a nastily-placed bullet which hit him just above the knee.

Of course, he earned the lead by allegedly forcing his way into the wrong residence at a mobile home park in Tangipahoa Parish (I can’t pronounce it, either) last month. According to WWL News, the suspect broke in through a window, threatening to kill the homeowner and her family. He also reportedly assaulted a guest in the process. He immediately learned this was the wrong way to win new friends because the female homeowner produced a pistol and plugged him.

Instead of running or even hobbling away, our miscreant reportedly stripped off all of his clothes and then ran to a nearby vehicle, broke a window and tried to barricade himself inside.

If you guessed drugs were somehow involved, you are a good guesser. According to the report, the suspect confessed to the sheriff’s office that he had consumed some “illegal narcotics” prior to the incident. Our model citizen now faces charges including home invasion, second-degree battery, “vehicle burglary,” and resisting arrest.

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