Presidential frontrunner Donald Trump released his official stance on the Second Amendment Friday, reversing his previous position calling for an all-out ban on “assault weapons.”
“Gun and magazine bans are a total failure. That’s been proven every time it’s been tried,” Trump’s official statement reads. “Opponents of gun rights try to come up with scary sounding phrases like ‘assault weapons’, ‘military-style weapons’ and ‘high capacity magazines’ to confuse people.”
“What they’re really talking about are popular semi-automatic rifles and standard magazines that are owned by tens of millions of Americans. Law-abiding people should be allowed to own the firearm of their choice. The government has no business dictating what types of firearms good, honest people are allowed to own.”
Looking back at the business mogul’s 2000 book, “The America We Deserve,” Trump instead advocated for an outright ban on semi-automatic rifles, referring to them specifically as “assault weapons.”
“I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons…” Trump said, according to ontheissues.org.
Declaring his official view regarding background checks on his campaign site today, Trump, who previously called for “a slightly longer waiting period” in 2000, also argued against any expansion of the background check system whatsoever.
“When the system was created, gun owners were promised that it would be instant, accurate and fair. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case today…” wrote Trump on his 2016 presidential website. “What we don’t need to do is expand a broken system.”
The real estate tycoon also appears to have changed his tune on the National Rifle Association as well, previously accusing Republicans of blindly following the group without question.
“Republicans walk the NRA line and refuse even limited restrictions,” Trump’s 2000 book states.
Speaking with Ammoland last July, the Republican contender praised the NRA for their “great work,” calling himself a “Life Member.”
“I am a Life Member of the NRA and am proud of their service in protecting our right to keep and bear arms. The NRA’s efforts to stop dangerous, gun-banning legislation and regulation is invaluable,” Trump said. “The media focus on those efforts overshadows the great work the NRA does on behalf of safety and conservation.”
Trump has repeatedly been accused of changing his stance on a multitude of issues including abortion, taxes and the War on Drugs. Whether Trump’s recent remarks are genuine or a continuation of questionable shifts to appeal to Republican voters will remain a crucial question as the presidential race moves forward.