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One swing vote threat to gun rights

Hawley, Minn. My Friday mail included an Obama campaign flier from the Minnesota DFL State Committee. The flier had an interesting headline: "When it comes to Barack Obama vs. John McCain on gun rights: It's a draw." It goes on to claim that both...

Hawley, Minn.

My Friday mail included an Obama campaign flier from the Minnesota DFL State Committee. The flier had an interesting headline: "When it comes to Barack Obama vs. John McCain on gun rights: It's a draw." It goes on to claim that both candidates will always support Second Amendment rights, oppose emergency gun confiscations and support the Supreme Court's decision on private gun ownership. All of this may be true, but I don't for a moment believe these candidates to be equals on Second Amendment rights.

The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision was as close as it could get, with a bare majority voting 5-4 to uphold our right to keep and bear arms. Both Bush nominees (Samuel Alito and John Roberts) voted in the majority, while the two Clinton nominees (Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg) dissented. In other words, we are one swing vote away from a reversal of this important decision. How would Obama appointees to the Supreme Court vote on gun issues? We can't know for sure, but my guess is they would be a lot closer to Clinton's nominees than to Bush's.

McCain has a consistent record of support for gun rights that Obama cannot match, and McCain is far more likely to nominate justices who support Second Amendment rights. This is something to consider when you enter the voting booth on Nov. 4.

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