I did not previously post my views on 2d Amendment rights because I did not think it was a major political issue when I began my campaign.
But in February, the Democrats who are a majority of the 80 member State Assembly in Trenton approved 22 new bills that would make it a lot more difficult and expensive to legally own a gun in New Jersey. Those bills will become law if approved by the Democrat controlled 40 member State Senate,and Republican Governor Chris Christie.
They did this even though none of these proposed new laws is likely to stop any violence or save any lives.
That is because the Democrats did not propose these laws to stop violence or save lives. They did it to gain political power. They know that the folks who run the newspapers and TV news and most voters don’t know what is in these laws, but will praise Democrats for passing them anyway–and attack and ridicule any Republican who opposes them. Democrats also know that when they fill the news with emotional issues like gun control distracts people learning how high taxes and big government are killing the economy.
Too few Republican leaders talk about this. I am running for Governor because I believe most people in New Jersey will support traditional Republican principles if they are properly explained and defended.
The right of every mentally competent, law abiding citizen to own and carry a firearm for the protection of self, family, and property secures our most basic “unalienable” rights of “life” and “liberty”. Our Declaration of Independence recognized that right in 1776 and the Second and Fourteenth Amendments of our U.S. Constitution guarantee that right today.
While the government can and should make and enforce laws to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill, it must do so without infringing on the fundamental rights of citizens who obey the law and who are not mentally ill.
New Jersey already has some of the harshest and most burdensome gun laws in the nation. For example, under current New Jersey law, police chief can and do routinely deny ‘concealed carry’ permits to virtually everyone who applies, even when the applicant has outstanding character, is as proficient in the use of the weapon as a police officer, and proves a special need for protection. Years of studies have proven that citizens in other states where qualified, law abiding private citizens legally carry concealed weapons, are safer than us here in New Jersey.
Yet in spite of these strict laws, criminals carry concealed weapons whenever they want because they have little trouble getting illegal guns from international gun smuggling gangs, just as they have little trouble getting illegal drugs in spite of very strict drug laws. And prosecutors routinely plea-bargain away gun charges to avoid taking cases to trial.
With increased violent crime, and high pension, salary and benefits costs limiting the number of police we can afford, this is not a time to disarm qualified, law abiding citizens who are willing and able to defend themselves and their families when police are not around.