Amid pandemic panic, Trump, McConnell ‘pushing ahead’ on judges


President Donald Trump stood behind Judge Brett Kavanaugh, who was appointed to the Supreme Court. Trump has been busy filling federal court vacancies with conservatives. (Snip, YouTube, C-SPAN)

While the mainstream media and Capitol Hill are focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic, President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are “pushing ahead with an aggressive effort to get more federal judges confirmed,” according to Fox News.

Months ago, amid the impeachment push by House Democrats to derail Trump’s presidency, the president and the Senate were continuing to fill federal judicial vacancies, a scenario that gun rights leader Alan Gottlieb at the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms contended was the real reason Democrats want Trump removed. He is bringing balance to the courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, where there are at least four pending cases seeking high court review. One of those cases was brought by CCRKBA, with support from the Second Amendment Foundation.

According to the Fox News report, “Losing the White House or control of the Senate would be a major blow to efforts to install conservative jurists on the federal bench.” That fact alone makes the November presidential and congressional elections paramount for America’s beleaguered gun owners.

Over the past couple of weeks, SAF has coordinated with other gun rights organizations to file federal challenges to various state decisions to shut down gun stores during the pandemic panic. The lawsuits have caused at least some politicians to reconsider and back off orders to close down firearms retailers, especially since the Department of Homeland Security has declared gun wholesalers and retailers to be “essential” to the workforce in an advisory memo.

Fox News quote McConnell stating, “My motto for the rest of the year is ‘leave no vacancy behind.” He made that remark during a dinner last year with the Federalist Society.

Anti-gunners do not want conservatives on the federal courts because they fear rulings that could undo years, if not decades, of incrementally-stricter gun control laws. One signal about the seriousness of their predicament was in the challenge of a now-defunct New York City handgun regulation by the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, a CCRKBA affiliate. The law was so egregious that almost immediately after the high court decided it would review the ordinance, the city scrambled to change it rather than have a court ruling slap it down. The prevailing theory in the gun rights community is that New York officials knew all along the regulation—which forbade handgun owners in the city from taking their handguns outside the city—would not pass a constitutional smell test.

One of Trump’s most important campaign pledges was to appoint conservatives to the federal bench. He has been doing so ever since taking office, including the appointments of both Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Last fall, at the height of the impeachment effort—which collapsed—Gottlieb issued a public statement underscoring the connection between anti-Trump Democrats on Capitol Hill and the gun prohibition movement.

“We said it before and we will continue saying the people determined to oust Donald Trump are the same people who work closely with the gun prohibition lobby to erode the right to keep and bear arms,” Gottlieb stated.

There has been nothing to indicate any change in the situation over the winter.

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