President Donald Trump said on Monday that Democrats in Virginia are “working hard” to take away residents’ Second Amendment rights as a massive gun rights rally took place in the state capital of Richmond.
“The Democrat Party in the Great Commonwealth of Virginia are working hard to take away your 2nd Amendment rights,” Trump tweeted.
“This is just the beginning,” he said. “Don’t let it happen, VOTE REPUBLICAN in 2020!”
The Democrat Party in the Great Commonwealth of Virginia are working hard to take away your 2nd Amendment rights. This is just the beginning. Don’t let it happen, VOTE REPUBLICAN in 2020!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 20, 2020
Trump offered a similar message in a Friday tweet, saying a loss of gun rights is “what happens when you vote for Democrats, they will take your guns away.”
“Republicans will win Virginia in 2020. Thank you Dems!” the president tweeted.
Your 2nd Amendment is under very serious attack in the Great Commonwealth of Virginia. That’s what happens when you vote for Democrats, they will take your guns away. Republicans will win Virginia in 2020. Thank you Dems!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 17, 2020
In 2016, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton carried Virginia over Trump by approximately 5 percentage points.
Former President George W. Bush was the last Republican to carry the commonwealth in 2004 in his race against former Secretary of State John Kerry.
USA Today reported that Monday’s rally was to voice opposition to gun control legislation being offered by Democrats after taking full control of the state legislature in November.
Democrat Gov. Ralph Northam supports adopting legislation that he and members of his party say will help address gun violence in the Old Dominion State.
Northam declared a state of emergency last week ahead of the rally, banning firearms inside a security perimeter around the state Capitol.
Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League and organizer of the rally, told USA Today what Northam and Democrat legislators propose threatens Virginians’ Second Amendment rights.
“The governor and leadership in the Democratic Party have declared war on law-abiding gun owners, and they’re tired of it,” Van Cleave said. “It’s basically people saying we’re fed up. We’ve had enough.
“The governor has touched the third rail. He has motivated people to drive across the state and from other states to come protect our rights.”
Van Cleave estimated as many as 100,000 gun advocates would come to the event.
Crowds in Richmond, Virginia are already massive and In the thousands
— ELIJAH (@ElijahSchaffer) January 20, 2020
Proposals being considered in the state legislature include banning “assault firearms” as well as expanding background checks on gun sales, allowing localities to ban guns in some public areas and allowing “authorities to temporarily take guns away from anyone deemed dangerous to themselves or others,” according to USA Today.
Democrat’s’ Bloomberg-funded gun control kegger continues: Virginia legislation seeks to restrict number of outdoor gun ranges https://t.co/q2dNHpu0x8
— Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) January 19, 2020
Van Cleave believes his rally is receiving strong support from around the country because the legislation being considered in his state is a forerunner of what is likely to happen in others.
“Virginia is the canary in the coal mine,” he said.
Concerned about their gun rights following last November’s election, more than 100 counties, cities and towns across Virginia have passed resolutions declaring themselves sanctuaries for the Second Amendment.
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring said in a statement last month, “These resolutions have no legal force, and they’re just part of an effort by the gun lobby to stoke fear,” The Associated Press reported.
Van Cleave believes if Democrats pass the gun control measures they are considering, Virginia will flip back to Republican hands.
“Look, they’ve woken up a base that’s been sleeping. … Purple areas will turn bright red,” he said. “They’re going to pay for this at the polls.”
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