Gary Johnson on Gun Control
Libertarian presidential nominee; former Republican NM Governor
JOHNSON: Well, nothing has come through Congress.
Q: So, do you have a view on what might work?
JOHNSON: No, I don't.
Q: What about assault-style weapons? Is there a constitutional right to that?
JOHNSON: Well, assault-style weapons, meaning semi-automatic-style rifles, you are talking about 30 million weapons, and if you do that, I daresay half the owners of those weapons are not going to turn them in, and now you're going to criminalize the ownership of those weapons.
Q: So, it sounds to me like you're saying, in theory, 'Sure,' but in fact there's no proposal that would meet your test. If there was something that would work.
JOHNSON: I don't want to for a second say that there might not be that proposal tomorrow.
JOHNSON: I don't think our position would be making it easier. We're not looking to roll back anything. But with regard to keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill, with regard to keeping guns out of the hands of potential terrorists--Bill talked about establishing a thousand-person taskforce to potentially address that, a hot line. Look, we should be open to these discussions.
Q: And on the Orlando mass shooting?
JOHNSON: Look, the FBI came in contact with this guy three times. What transpired? Why wasn't this guy deprived of his guns?
JOHNSON: No. I think that these lists are subject to error. And if you're one of those error members, and I am talking now about the terrorist list or the no-fly list, that has active members of Congress on both lists...
Q: But you know those are the very small minority of cases.
Q: And there is due process to deal with your being on a list. Right? Because the suggestion would be, you're wrongly on a list, we can deal with that. You get a gun when you're on one of those lists, now it's out of our hands.
JOHNSON: Believe me, these are really sensitive issues. All of these government lists are subject to error. And if you happen to be one of those, you may have your life adversely affected.
His campaign pointed to a recent blog post by the ACLU titled, "Until the No Fly List is Fixed, It Shouldn't Be Used To Restrict People's Freedoms." The ACLU is currently in a legal challenge against the no fly list. They say it is "unconstitutionally vague, and innocent people are blacklisted without a fair process to correct government error."
President Obama and Hillary Clinton have come out in favor of barring people from the no fly list and terror watch list from purchasing weapons. Donald Trump said that he is going to meet with the NRA to discuss these proposals.
New Mexico currently has some of the nation's most pro-gun laws, in part thanks to Johnson's adamant refusal as governor to sign bills putting more restrictions on guns. Today, New Mexico ranks 13th in the nation in gun murders in relation to population, with 3.29 per 100,000 people, according to FBI statistics.
My message was a simple: individual freedom, individual rights and less government run with a common-sense business approach.
I opposed public funding of abortion and federal land management control, and I supported lower taxes, term limits, tough criminal sentences, gun ownership rights, right-to-work legislation and public funds for school vouchers.
I wanted to make certain that liberties and freedoms are equally available to all, with a limited government which basically ensures that no one is harmful to anyone else.
A: I'm one of those who believe the bumper sticker: If you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns. The first people who are going to be in line to turn in their guns are law-abiding citizens. Criminals are going to be left with guns. I believe that concealed carry is a way of reducing gun violence.
Q: Do you carry a gun?
A: I don't, and I don't own a gun, but I'd still just as soon have the concealed carry law. If the guy who is going to hold up a car knows there is the possibility of a concealed weapon, he may think twice. We don't have that law here.
Q: But the statistics show that people don't use guns to stop crime. They use them to hurt themselves or innocent people.
A: Yeah, but there is deterrence in the legality of guns. It's also part of the Constitution.
Q: The NRA disagrees with any limits. Do you?
A: I don't believe the laws regarding guns are effective. We're allowed to bear arms. It's part of a free society.
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