July 1st, 2010
04:25 PM ET
4 years ago

Opposing gun groups take opposite stands on Kagan

The National Rifle Association and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence have taken opposing views on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan.
The National Rifle Association and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence have taken opposing views on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan.

Washington (CNN) - Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan received a mixed reaction Thursday from groups on opposite ends of the gun control debate.

The National Rifle Association announced it will oppose President Barack Obama's choice to sit on the high court, while the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence announced its support for Kagan's nomination.

The NRA, a powerful lobby group, warned senators of severe political consequences if they end up supporting the nominee.

A statement by top NRA officials said Kagan has "repeatedly demonstrated a clear hostility" to gun rights while working in Democratic administrations and academia.


"She should not serve on any court, let alone be confirmed to a lifetime seat on the highest court in the land," said Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox, who told senators that the vote on Kagan "will be a part of future candidate evaluations."

Kagan concluded her testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. On Thursday, the committee planned to hear from several panels of witnesses both for and against the 50-year-old lawyer.

Democrats openly predicted Kagan would be confirmed by the committee and the full Senate. A Senate vote on her nomination to replace the retiring Justice John Paul Stevens is expected by the end of July, in plenty of time for her join the bench before the court's term begins in October.

Kagan did get the endorsement of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.

"Her testimony has provided ample reason to think that she will interpret and apply the Second Amendment consistent with the urgent need to keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of dangerous people," said the group's president, Paul Helmke.

Gun rights became a key topic during Kagan's confirmation hearing. The same day that the Senate committee hearing began, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling affirming the idea that the Second Amendment's "right to bear arms" is a fundamental individual right. The 5-4 conservative majority limited the ability of states and cities to pass overly restrictive gun regulations.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor was one of four liberal dissenters in that case.

The NRA last year opposed her elevation to the high court in what was the first time the powerful lobby had weighed in on a Supreme Court nominee.

Kagan herself offered few specifics on how she would vote on future gun rights cases, if confirmed to the bench. She did note that high court rulings over the past two years affirming an individual right to ownership for self-protection was "settled law" deserving full consideration as legal precedent.


Filed under: Elena Kagan • NRA • Supreme Court
soundoff (53 Responses)
  1. Wisconsinite - the GObP Loves Big Oil, But Hates Suffering Americans

    Wisconsinite July 1st, 2010 4:36 pm ET

    I am with the NRA on this issue. Kagan is flaming, gun-grabbing liberal.
    VOTE HER DOWN!!!

    Oh for God's sake! What are you idiots on the Rabid Right . . . .12????

    July 1, 2010 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  2. David

    the NRA is beginning to sound more like a terrorist group, rather than a lobby group. anyone with common sense or heard about the latest outcome from the supreme court would understand that our second amendment rights are protected over and over again, and that no standing President would ever change or revoke the second amendment. The guns of America will remain in the hands of Americans, but we need restrictions for those within America that would harm other Americans by bearing arms. No different than the hate groups in America preaching hate and tout that that is there freedom of speech. Some where you have to draw a line!

    July 1, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  3. anotherGDlefty

    'Anybody that values their rights under the Constitution should OPPOSE Progressives and liberals from being appointed to the USSC. If they get a majority on the USSC then the American Constitution can just be shredded."

    That is the most backward post here today. Compliments of a fool that thinks the duly elected(by a landslide) president is a dictator...

    So you got NO problem with a USSC loaded with conservatives shredding the constitution?

    What an idiot you are.

    July 1, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  4. MR AMERICA

    The Right To Bear Arms was written in 300 years ago, when we had flintlocks and redcoats breaking into our homes.

    It makes perfect sense to amend the constitution to incorporate modern sensibilities.

    The NRA can suck it.

    July 1, 2010 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  5. Rick McDaniel

    Gotta go with the NRA on that......not because I am a gun advocate, but because we cannot afford to allow ourselves to be disarmed, by government.

    To do so, would make us easy for dictator takeover.

    The Brady group is well intentioned, but naive.

    July 1, 2010 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWN. The NRA opposed a liberal or a democrat? Next thing you know, we'll have the Ticker full of articles telling us that water is wet and that doody is smelly.

    "Anybody that values their rights under the Constitution should OPPOSE Progressives and liberals from being appointed to the USSC."

    Anyone who calls liberals or Dem or progressive judges "activists" needs to read the Heller and Citizens United cases VERY carefully...including the dissents. You retards don't have the slightest idea what you're talking about.

    BTW, she's getting appointed...it's a foregone conclusion...so suck it, grab a tissue and put your big girl pants on you pantwetting crybabies.

    July 1, 2010 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  7. Marcus

    "She should not serve on any court, let alone be confirmed to a lifetime seat on the highest court in the land," said Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox, who told senators that the vote on Kagan "will be a part of future candidate evaluations."

    SO?
    Since Roe vs Wade we hear that. No, make it since those great rulings that outlawed the Jim Crow laws. No, make it since... forever.
    When there's an available seat at the SCOTUS... EVERYBODY wants to influence the choice/selection of the next Justice.
    Powerful lobbies (no matter from wherever they came from and whatever they represent) are NOT the 'owners' of the Legislative. They are highly influencial (no, really???!!!!), but they don't say 'DO THAT!!!' or 'DON'T DO THAT!!!' and are obeyed 100% of the time.
    They weren't last year.
    They won't gonna be... again.

    July 1, 2010 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  8. Darko

    Because making guns illegal is going to stop criminals from obtaining and using them...?

    Banning guns has certainly worked for DC and Chicago ,right? LOL

    Disarming good natured citizens makes easy targets for criminals.

    July 1, 2010 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  9. Sniffit

    "Anyone on this zealotous NRA side care to detail how she has "'repeatedly demonstrated a clear hostility' to gun rights"?"

    They have no facts or evidence. They were told to believe it...ergo, they will believe it. They will not question or doubt or exercise one iota of skeptical, rational, self-thought. To be a contemporary conservative you must first kill any tendency toward metacognition you possess and then turn on LImbaugh...and poof...raging, resentful, homophobic, religio-fascist, borderline-racist lunatic.

    July 1, 2010 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  10. Marcus

    Rick McDaniel – Persecutory feelings? You need to have a gun in your hands or Democracy will fall? Doom and gloom?
    Peace, bro.
    Relax and breathe. Again.
    There are way more better ways to defend your point of view.
    'The sky is falling' is not one of them.

    July 1, 2010 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  11. Steve (the real one)

    I have not read one liberal who has complained about the 2nd amendment or the NRA adrress the issue of the criminal element., not one! The gun ban Chicago and DC, and the ILLEGAL taking of weapons in N.O. after Katrina ONLY affected LEGAL, REGISTERED gun owners! OK lefties, what's the plan to remove weapons from the criminals? I'm waiting!

    July 1, 2010 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  12. Darko

    TRH – "She refused to say gun ownership was a God given right. And you know what? It's not. It's a LEGAL right. "

    Look up the phrase "inalienable rights" then get back to us...

    July 1, 2010 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  13. ib

    I would like some of you that are so opposed to the NRA to explain one thing to me–Chicago and Washington DC have the tightest gun controll laws in the country and look at their crime rate– amoung the highest in the nation. Now why if gun controll laws are so needed why aren't they the two safest cities in the country instead of amoung the most dangerous to live in??? Well; I'm waiting for you to justify you so called gun controll laws and why the NRA is so bad for looking out for us.

    July 1, 2010 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  14. Mesa Mick

    The NRA members and their leadership are nothing but a gaggle of tin foil hat wearin' pee pants that see a commie behind every bush just waiting to take away their guns – even Santa is suspect.

    They don't like Kagan? I'm Shocked I tell you – Shocked!

    The NRA motto for 2010 & 2011 is going to be...

    "If you don't own guns than YOU are the outlaw"

    Pretty catchy don't cha think Sister Sarah...

    July 1, 2010 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  15. Frankie

    We need another constitutional amendment: the right to arm bears. Then they can protect themselves from the NRA.

    July 1, 2010 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  16. JFS

    Folks, I believe in the rights of the Second Amendement. But this MODERATE GOPer needs to bring some things to the NRA's attention.
    1. The 2nd Amendement was designed to give the Newly formed Colonist the right to bare arms...a right the the British Crown took away from the colonists to prevents terrorism.
    2. Taking someone's protection from them in 1700's was a kiss of death. People were with out the ability to hunt daily meals, protect themselves from Hostile native Americans, and protect themselves from invasive French activits from Canada.
    3. Believe me Washington, Hamilton,and the rest ...would have never dreamed of AKA's, Machine guns, Street gangs,terrorists, Drug cartels and criminal elements as of today. The 2ND Amendment would have most definately been word quite differently. I own a gun for protection...but I am not so foolish to think that I do not need laws that protect my being as well as my right to own a gun. Hunting as a sport and hunting people for other reasons will NEVER be on an equal basis.

    July 1, 2010 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  17. Marcus

    On the topic of having a better way to expose his/her points of view.
    I remember there was this guy many years ago who once came out with a research that supposedly had made on his own.
    Among other things he claimed that he had found out, analyzing police reports and judicial cases, that only in 2% of the cases when a burglar (or the likes) invaded a house and was confronted by an armed owner he/she dared to try to pick the gun from the man/woman's hands and was succesful.
    The real number is something between 15/20%, according to the majority of the serious reasearches on the subject.
    When confronted with the fact that not even gun ownership rights supporters did believe in his numbers, he couldn't prove that he had made a research in the first place!
    Credibility is among of the many things he lost after that 'research', and it's what the NRA is putting at stake with their doom and gloom treats.

    July 1, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  18. Marcus

    Darko – You proved my point. 'Good natured citizens'?
    And how can we know that EVERYBODY that owns a gun is a 'good natured citizen'?
    That's the whole point on having some control over the ownership of guns. Since they are made to treaten and/or harm and/or kill, they should be only allowed to 'good natured citizens' and not deranged, criminal and maniacal ones.
    But how can we separate the 'good natured citizens' from those who MUST not have one on their power... if not by setting some sort of screening among gun owners?

    July 1, 2010 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  19. Limbaugh is a liberal

    What is this with the NRA constantly complaining about democrats? During Obama's tenure so far teh Supreme Court has given them favorable rulings not once but twice! Obama signed legislation allowing for guns to be brought to National Parks, and increased arming of militias along the Mexican border! If anything there are more rights and availability of guns during Obama than there were under Bush!

    July 1, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  20. Hugo

    BeverlyNC July 1st, 2010 2:48 pm ET

    Republicans are nastiest, most disrespectful people in our country. Who is this racist Governor to "scold" or tell the President to "do his job". NO ONE speaks of and to the President in such a manner.
    ______________________________
    This is too funny, racist Governor, haaaaaa! haaaa! racist for wanting to stem the flow of illegal entries into the US through her State? This is even richer in content and especially funny on the heels of our AG Eric "Coward's"Holder's handling of the Black Panther Racists terrorizing whites at the polling booth.... FUATHURNON!

    July 1, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  21. Steve (the real one)

    Darko – You proved my point. 'Good natured citizens'?
    And how can we know that EVERYBODY that owns a gun is a 'good natured citizen'?
    ---------------–
    He can't, I can't , and you can't BUT we darn well know for sure that armed crimals are not!

    July 1, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  22. Peter E

    I believe that people who are properly trained in the use of guns to protect life should be allowed those guns. And guess what, we already have such people! You know who they are? The police! And they take 8-12 weeks to train in protecting citizens and the use of guns! Not the 'I have a right to guns, so give me one... nay, give me a dozen!' More people are killed by their own (or their family member's) 'home protecting guns' than by the guns of the burglerers! If you want to keep your home safe, get a german shepherd! At least they know exactly whom to tear apart, even in the darkness! And they don't miss!

    July 1, 2010 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  23. jbb

    No one is going to take your guns away from you and I have no idea why anyone thinks they need an AK47 or similar weapon. I have no objection to someone having guns for hunting etc., but they always use the defense that the criminals have guns. Maybe if all these gun freeks didn't think they had to have a small arsonel we wouldn't have so many criminals breaking into homes and stealing their guns and not have some innocent child killed because the gun owners are to stupid to care for the guns properly.

    The NRA doesn't run this country, but they seem to run the Republican's. A sad day for American, but then you have to consider the source!!!

    July 1, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  24. charles

    How is it a first ammendment when thousands of people mainly poor blacks are languishing in prisons for gun violations. The spreme court Judges have extra security, than the common men and women who take on the blunt of the right to own guns. For those people who proffit from gun sales are praising the first amendment.

    July 1, 2010 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  25. Jayson

    I love all the anti-gun idiots on here who think that banning firearms will solve the problem. Since when did punishing responsible law abiding citizens do anything to stop criminals.

    July 1, 2010 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
1 2 3