April 23, 2016

I force myself to slog through the mush of what Chelsea Clinton said about the Second Amendment.

I posted that clip yesterday and said "the words scarcely matter. The vibe is all there is. She wants people to feel that Hillary Clinton will dispel the illusion of Second Amendment rights."

I got the clip from an article that stopped the transcription after a couple sentences. I was going to try to finish the transcription myself, but I immediately hit a mush of syllables that — despite repeated rewinding — I could not decipher. (I now see it was "Moms Demand Action.")

I was going to put "undecipherable" in brackets and keep going, but the sentences I heard did not hang together in what I thought could be readable, analyzable text, so I got the post done the way I did.

Now, I've found a little more transcription and took the trouble to complete it myself, so I wanted to hold myself accountable and check my cruel assessments of the meaninglessness of Chelsea's words.

She begins:
It matters to me that my mom also recognizes the role the Supreme Court has when it comes to gun control. With Justice Scalia on the bench, one of the few areas where the Court actually had an inconsistent record relates to gun control. 
I'm surprised at the implied statement that the Supreme Court has been mostly consistent.  Did she mean to say that, and why would she say that? But it's just plain wrong to say that the Supreme Court has been inconsistent about the Second Amendment during the period of Scalia's service. There have been 3 Second Amendment cases, and all 3 have supported the right. (The cases are the familiar Heller and McDonald and something minor that happened last month.)
Sometimes the court upheld local and state gun control measures as being compliant with the Second Amendment and sometimes the court struck them down. 
That's just flat-out false. Chelsea has this pedantic, lecturing style but the facts are patently wrong.
So if you listen to Moms Demand Action and the Brady Campaign and the major efforts pushing for smart, sensible and enforceable gun control across our country — in disclosure, have endorsed my mom — they say they believe the next time the Court rules on gun control, it will make a definitive ruling. 
She's saying the cases are in disarray and the time is ripe for clearing up the confusion, getting to something "definitive," but that's not true. She's really promoting changing the law that got settled in 2 very high profile, extensively briefed and argued cases that produced carefully thought out opinions. The Second Amendment does require application in particular cases (such as the case from last month, Caetano v. Massachusetts, which said the right included stun guns). So there are details to work out, but things have not been left in a state of confusion or in need of "a definitive ruling."

I can see a way to weasel out of her misstatement. She could say she was only telling us what you'll hear "if you listen to Moms Demand Action and the Brady Campaign," and she never purported to know anything about the case law from any other source. That, at best, gets her to the ignorant passing on of bad information.
So it matters to me that my mom's the only person running for President who not only makes that connection...
What connection? Maybe she referred to a connection earlier, before this clip began. I am just guessing that the "connection" is between Scalia's death and an opportunity to get the needed (actually, unneeded) definitive ruling.
... but also has a strong record on gun control and standing up to the NRA. 
So, she's implying that her mother would appoint a Justice who would flip what had been a 5-4 balance in Second Amendment cases. That's the vibe within the words and why I said the particular words don't really matter. I guess it matters that she's leaving weasel room. There's nothing specific — nothing like a statement that Hillary Clinton is committed to nominating Justices who think the Supreme Court's Second Amendment cases were wrongly decided.
This is one of those issues I didn’t know I could care more about until I became a mother. And I think every day about the Sandy Hook families whose children every day, don’t come home from school. And I can’t even imagine that living horror and tragedy.
And there it's devolved into emotive political theater. She cares. She has special status to care (being a mother). And murder is horrible. Fear. Care.


Hagar said...

The law is not setled until we get what we want.

sykes.1 said...

She is every bit as corrupt as her debauched, depraved mother.

shiloh said...

Being obsessed w/Hillary is understandable, Chelsea not so much. And where's your Hillary's in trouble tag?

Slow news day ...

The Drill SGT said...

If you have the facts, etc: else
If you have the Law, etc: else

She's at the "pounding on the table" stage

Matt Sablan said...

"The law is not setled until we get what we want."

-- Kind of the biggest gripe I have with talking about the Supreme Court with the more radical people on the left. Citizens United? The Supreme Court got it wrong, but with enough Right Thinking People will get it right. Heller? Same deal.

ACA case? It's The Law.

MAJMike said...

Politicians prefer unarmed peasants.

Curious George said...

"And I think every day about the Sandy Hook families..."

What a steaming pile.

Tommy Duncan said...

It's genetic.

I've actually read through some of "Mom's" answers to (her few tough) interview questions. The ideas Hillary presents are loosely connected, if connected at all. Hillary's assertions of fact are often questionable or plucked out of their proper context. Hillary (like Obama) does not actually argue for her conclusions, she simply states her conclusions as common sense.

Chelsea is a candidate in training.

AllenS said...

Neither of the Clinton's go anywhere without armed men and women surrounding them. The same will be true of her own elitist child. She needs to be asked about those facts.

Tommy Duncan said...

BTW, Althouse does us a favor by slogging through Chelsea's statement. Only the brave and ruthlessly neutral do that kind of work. Kudos to Ann.

Humperdink said...

Obama, Bill and Hillary ....... and now the ugly step child.

Who are they? Why only the best gun sales people this country has ever seen.

AllenS said...

Veterans are a very small percentage of the citizens of the country.

damikesc said...

So, is Chelsea still not fair game for criticism, according to the media?

MaxedOutMama said...

Well - thanks for the exercise. Political mush is the order of the day, it seems. Often on the GOP side too.

While you are right about the intellectual failings of this little talk, it is effective in getting across the primary message - that if her auditors vote for Hillary, a justice will be put in who will reverse precedent and get the guns out of all "those" people.

It is a very elitist message, because of course the "important" people will always have the guns, or have people around them carrying guns.

The presumption that those decisions will be overturned may wel be correct.

rehajm said...

Is obsessing over the Sandy Hook families the reason she sucked so bad at all those 'careers' her family suck-ups appropriated for her?

FullMoon said...

Yep, she thinks about those kids all day long, right after she remembers her mom dodging bullets on the tarmac.

Sebastian said...

"it is effective in getting across the primary message" Correct. It's nice to see AA uphold some intellectual standards once in a while, but it's also beside the point to parse Prog propaganda for logic and evidence. Of course, the Clintons lie proudly, openly, in-your-face, and what-are-you-gonna-do-about-it. Not all Progs are down with them, sure, but it's not the 2nd Amendment propaganda or the lies or the we'll-fix-this-with-the-next-justice posture that keep them out of the Clinton swamp.

Michael K said...

" the primary message - that if her auditors vote for Hillary, a justice will be put in who will reverse precedent and get the guns out of all "those" people. "

The gun thing is Hillary's wedge with Bernie. The only place he has ever made sense is on guns because Vermont has gun owners.

Naturally, Hillary has to get to his left there because there is no room on any other issue.

Everybody, including Hillary I'm sure, is now waiting to see if Comey drops a shoe.

Robert Cook said...

What's most distasteful is the obvious reality: this is just an opportunity to put forth Chelsea Clinton as a public figure in the political realm, the first step in her eventually entering politics herself. Ugh!

Humperdink said...

"What's most distasteful is the obvious reality: this is just an opportunity to put forth Chelsea Clinton as a public figure in the political realm, the first step in her eventually entering politics herself. Ugh!"

Visualize Fredo.

Richard Dolan said...

Clinton gets it wrong in a more fundamental sense. The Dem justices have been strongly pushing stare decisis as a case-controlling principle, recently in Frederichs (at oral argument in the union fee case from California in which the Court divided 4-4 after Scalia's death) and before that in Casey and the later abortion cases. It would be quite a turn-around to see them drop that concern to overrule Heller and MacDonald. The recent (and unanimous) decision in Caetano suggests that it won't happen. It turns out that the justices know how to play the long game, even if CClinton doesn't understand what's going on.

damikesc said...

What's most distasteful is the obvious reality: this is just an opportunity to put forth Chelsea Clinton as a public figure in the political realm, the first step in her eventually entering politics herself. Ugh!

If NY want to elect a princess who has never had to actually do anything in her life for office, more power to them.

It does, though, belie their own belief in how smart and sophisticated they are.

Yancey Ward said...


I don't think one can assume that. To have ruled for the state of Massachusetts in that case would have created some seriously bad political optics for the gun-control movement (even in a dissenting opinion); it basically would have clearly confirmed the gun-rights proponent's arguments that the goal of their opponents is full disarmament of the populace.

Given the right case to overturn Heller (and the votes to do so), I have literally zero doubt that the present liberal bloc on the court will gleefully overturn it.

holdfast said...

Unfortunately, Heller and McDonald are not as clear as we might wish. They don't speak to the Constitutionality of so-called Assault Weapons Bans (i.e. bans on black semi-auto weapons, because black guns are scarier than brown ones). Even before Scalia passed, the USSC passed on a couple of opportunities to review AWBs, and 2A folks think that's because Scalia and Roberts were concerned that Kennedy would go squishy.

With Scalia gone, the best 2A advocates can hope for is a holding action for now. I don't think we'll see a truly definitive case for a while - not unless a Republican wins and replaces Scalia AND one of the Libs. Which seems unlikely, sadly.

As long as the GOP holds the House, we won't see major Federal legislation - the concern is the Court opening the way for more state-level crap like what happened post Sandy Hook.

holdfast said...

"And I think every day about the Sandy Hook families..."

Stalker alert. Someone get a restraining order on her ASAP. That way she will become a prohibited person and can't get a gun.

holdfast said...

Anyway, this whole thing signals to me that the Dems have decided that they have now imported enough of a replacement electorate that they can completely kiss of the rural white vote.

Bilwick said...

As the Jesuits used to say "Give us the child and we will give you the adult." (They actually said, "Give us the boy and we will give you the man," but I've un-sexist-ed it.) What do you expect from someone raised by Hillary Clinton? At least Hillary is smart enough to know she's advocating BS.

Mountain Maven said...

You'll vote for her too.

Big Mike said...

Chelsea has this pedantic, lecturing style but the facts are patently wrong.

That technique has worked for Chelsea's mother, and it has worked for Barack Obama. Why would anyone on the left making a political speech change what's working?

Big Mike said...

Speaking of Chelsea's mother, she surely knows how to tailor her message to her audience. Today in Western Pennsylvania she's all in favor of guns and hunting. Now which Clinton to believe, the daughter speaking on behalf of the mother or the mother speaking on behalf of herself? How about neither?

Rich said...

Richard Dolan -- don't be so sure. Look at the shenanigans and hypocrisy the SCOTUS liberals demonstrated in the McDonald case (the incorporation one).

There are loads of black-letter SCOTUS precedent that once a right is recognized against the federal government as "fundamental" is it is to be incorporated against the states. And the liberal wing of SCOTUS over the years has consistently voted that way.

Then McDonald came along, which should have been 9-0 given Heller but instead that aside with the SCOTUS liberals all voting against incorporation.

Face it, thanks to the GOP completely screwing the pooch re: presidential candidates and handing the election over to Clinton (and to Sanders too, should this country be cursed with a Sanders nomination) the Second Amendment is dead.

The pro-2A bloc of SCOTUS inconceivably failed to take cases they could have used to nail down important things. Standard of scrutiny, for example -- Heller only said it had to be more than just rational basis but didn't specify anything.

Once Clinton (or Sanders) gets their justice in, it will be trivial for the Second Amendment to be reduced to a nullity without Heller ever being directly overruled.

damikesc said...

I'll buy plenty of guns. When they come for them, I'll make sure I take some down when they do it

Anthony said...

All behavior patterns are heritable. With two parents who are pathological liars, is anyone surprised that Chelsea is one, too?