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George Bush Sr. on Gun Control

President of the U.S., 1989-1993; Former Republican Rep. (TX)


1995: Ripped up NRA card for calling feds jack-booted thugs

The President had held out on the Brady Bill to appease the NRA, but by then he had alienated the powerful gun lobby as well as its opponents. In 1992, all fled from him. The NRA withheld its endorsement. James Brady left the Republican Party & endorsed Bill Clinton who promised to sign the Brady Bill, which he did in 1993.

Bush exacted his revenge in May 1995, when he read about an NRA fund-raising letter that described federal agents as "jack-booted thugs". Ripping up his NRA membership card, Bush wrote a letter of resignation, which his office made public. He accused the NRA of slandering dedicated officials "who are out there day and night laying their lives on the line for all of us."

Bush's act of principle received national publicity but not national respect. Gun-control advocates were unhappy that he had not resigned from the NRA when he could have made a difference, and the gun lobby dismissed his resignation as an act of pique, nothing more than petty payback.

Source: The Family, by Kitty Kelley, p.505-506 , Sep 14, 2004

Opposes gun control because it does not work

No law will stop someone from taking a pistol and shooting another human being. We have had laws on this general subject since the greatest of them all was brought down from Mount Sinai, and they have had scant effect.

A law controlling firearms would be no different. What we in this country have is a human problem, infinitely complex in composition and certainly in solution.

When a person intends to kill another, he or she will proceed to do so with whatever tool is at hand. It can be a knife, a shovel, or a firepoker. Yet no one seriously proposes outlawing every sharp or blunt instrument within the reach of a possible murderer.

I do not oppose gun control because I am insensitive to the sort of brutality that [hospital staff] see every day. I do so because I believe gun control does not work. The actual solution lies far beyond the power of lawmakers, in the vast territory of the human mind. There it is either adopted in moments of anger or thrust aside in the impulse to kill.

Source: Letter from George Bush in All The Best, p.291 , Mar 10, 1980

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Other past presidents on Gun Control: George Bush Sr. on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush(R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton(D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr.(R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan(R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter(D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford(R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon(R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson(D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy(D,1961-1963)
Dwight Eisenhower(R,1953-1961)
Harry S Truman(D,1945-1953)

Past Vice Presidents:
V.P.Dick Cheney
V.P.Al Gore
V.P.Dan Quayle
Sen.Bob Dole
V.P.Walter Mondale

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Page last updated: Jan 06, 2014