Joe Walsh on Gun Control

Republican presidential primary challenger (former IL Rep.)


Kinderguardian satire: "Happy shooting, kids"

In 2018, Walsh appeared on Showtime's "Who is America?" The political satire has Walsh endorsing an "intensive 3-week Kinderguardian course" that "introduces specially selected children from 12 to 4 years old to pistols, rifles, semiautomatics, and a rudimentary knowledge of mortars. In less than a month, a first-grader can become a first grenade-er." The video ends with Walsh saying, "Happy shooting, kids." Walsh claims that the show's star, Sacha Baron Cohen, tricked him into uttering those lines.
Source: Council on Foreign Relations on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Oct 3, 2019

Arm school employees to prevent school shootings

Source: Business Insider background for 2019 GOP presidential debate , Sep 24, 2019

Federal background check at gun shows and online

Q: You're on record saying you would loosen gun restrictions. Do you have any plans to address gun violence?

Walsh: I believe in the second Amendment, plain and simple. The problem we have now in this country is this are these mass shootings. There are a lot of things we need to look at. And I am a big gun guy, but here's what our focus should be on. We don't want anybody who shouldn't have a gun to have a gun. When I leave here in about an hour if I go to a gun dealer down the street and I want to buy a gun, I have to get a federal background check. It makes sense to me that if I buy that same gun at a gun show, I should have to undergo a federal background check. It makes the same sense to me that if I buy a gun online, I should have to undergo the background check. It makes sense that if I buy that same gun from a friend across town I should have got a background check. I think that will help, but then we've got to really take a serious look at mental health issues in this country.

Source: Business Insider 2019 GOP presidential primary debate , Sep 24, 2019

Purpose of Second Amendment is protection against tyranny

Joe Walsh took to Twitter [prior to the 2016 election] to announce his post-election day plans. "On November 9th," he wrote, "if Trump loses, I'm grabbing my musket. You in?"

Walsh frequently says horrific things on Twitter, and it may be tempting to write off this latest proclamation. But this sentiment--that a Donald Trump loss might justify the violent overthrow of a Hillary Clinton administration--is really just the logical endpoint of a longtime GOP talking point. The National Rifle Association has longed peddled the "insurrectionist" theory of the Second Amendment, arguing that the right to bear arms was intended to protect citizens against a tyrannical ruler.

Although this insurrectionist theory is foreign to the Supreme Court's interpretation of the Second Amendment, it's gained a foothold in the Republican Party. In a follow-up tweet, Walsh clarified that he was encouraging "protesting. Participating in acts of civil disobedience. Doing what it takes to get our country back."

Source: Slate.com, "Grab My Musket," on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Oct 26, 2016

Fast and Furious: an attack on gun owners & gun dealers

Q: You are among the earliest to call for Eric Holder's resignation. Do you think you are getting a little ahead of yourself?

WALSH: The more you learn about this, the more you have to ask yourself this. Nobody has given a rationale yet for this "Fast and Furious" program. And it is clear to me, and I think it's clear to a lot of Americans, that this was an attack on gun owners. This was an attack on gun dealers. And Eric Holder is responsible for that. It is out outrageous what transpired in this Fast and Furious. And all he is doing right now is obfuscating and not responding to Congress. He needs to be held accountable.

A: So if he answers for investigations or follow-up meetings, would you hold off on calling for the Attorney General's resignation? Or you're still standing by that?

WALSH: No, because it is clear the Department of Justice approved a failed program, a program that I believe is criminal and in which two of our border agents were killed. And that he can't take back.

Source: Your World with Cavuto on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Oct 26, 2011

Supports right to own hand guns & to carry concealed weapons

The 2nd Amendment is not at all ambiguous--this right "shall not be infringed." Guns laws across the country infringe this right, day after day. It is my position that we do not need any more anti-gun laws. I am a strong supporter of our constitutionally provided right to bear arms including our rights to own hand guns to protect our homes and to carry concealed weapons.

Private citizens are constitutionally guaranteed the right to own firearms.

Source: 2010 House campaign website, walshforcongress.com, "Issues" , Nov 2, 2010

Rated 93% by the NRA, indicating a pro-gun rights voting record.

Walsh scores 93% by NRA on pro-gun rights policies

While widely recognized today as a major political force and as America's foremost defender of Second Amendment rights, the National Rifle Association (NRA) has, since its inception, been the premier firearms education organization in the world. But our successes would not be possible without the tireless efforts and countless hours of service our nearly three million members have given to champion Second Amendment rights and support NRA programs.

The following ratings are based on lifetime voting records on gun issues and the results of a questionaire sent to all Congressional candidates; the NRA assigned a letter grade (with A+ being the highest and F being the lowest).

Source: NRA website 10-NRA on Aug 11, 2010

Loosen restrictions on interstate gun purchases.

Walsh co-sponsored Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act

Congressional Summary:Amends the federal criminal code to:

  • allow licensed firearms dealers to sell or deliver any firearm (currently, rifles or shotguns) to any state if the licensee meets with the purchaser and the transaction complies with the laws of the state in which the transfer is conducted and the purchaser's state of residence; and
  • eliminate the requirement that a licensee must conduct business at a gun show only in the state that is specified on the licensee's license.
  • Nothing in this Act shall prohibit the sale of a firearm or ammunition between licensed firearms dealers at any location in any state.

    Proponent's Comments (NRA-ILA, Oct. 14, 2011): This bill would remove several antiquated and unnecessary restrictions imposed on interstate firearms business since 1968:

    Source: HR58/S1691 11-H0058 on Oct 12, 2011

    Other candidates on Gun Control: Joe Walsh on other issues:
    2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
    V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
    Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
    Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
    Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
    Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
    Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
    Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
    Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
    Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

    2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
    Rep.Justin Amash (Libertarian-MI)
    CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
    Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
    Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
    Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
    Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
    V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
    Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
    CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
    Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
    Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
    V.C.Arvin Vohra (Libertarian-MD)
    Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
    Gov.Bill Weld (L-NY,R-MA)
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    2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
    State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
    Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
    Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
    Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
    Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
    Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
    Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
    Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
    Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
    Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
    Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
    Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
    Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
    Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
    Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
    Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
    CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
    Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
    Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
    CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

    Page last updated: Feb 25, 2020