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Walter Hudson’s Facebook post is a brilliant call-to-arms for principled conservatives and Republicans. At a time when the thoughtful center-right are despondent, Walter’s battle cry is inspiring. I can’t recommend Walter’s post enough. If you aren’t a Trump cultist, it’s today’s must reading.

Walter’s post starts with him laying out the stakes, saying “Civil war has broken out within the Republican Party. Long-standing divisions have led us to this point.” While that paragraph defines what’s at stake, what follows is a brilliant battle plan. For instance, Walter rightly said that “In war, the rules which govern in peacetime go out the window. In war, the object is the destruction of the enemy and the preservation of our way of life. These are the metaphorical stakes we face now. That is why the traditional expectation that Republican officers and delegates fall in line behind Trump will not be met. We will not cede our party to a leftist authoritarian pretender. We’ve worked too hard to build it. We’ve fostered too many relationships. We’ve created too much value to let it all disintegrate on account of one man.”

Let’s be clear about something. Trump’s supporters made it exceptionally clear that their primary goal is to blow the GOP up and rebuild it in Trump’s own warped image. Constitutionalists and principled conservatives like Walter Hudson and, to a lesser extent, me have gotten accused of being part of the GOP establishment. That isn’t a joke. That’s proof of the Trumpians’ own intellectual dishonesty.

Trump has already abandoned conservatism from a policy standpoint. He’s backing away from his own tax plan. This week, he’s come out in favor of raising the minimum wage. He’s always opposed entitlement reform. In all the talk about party unity, activists have never been told what they’d be uniting behind. Uniting behind a left-leaning vulgar authoritarian isn’t appealing to me. Based on the fact that Trump still has only garnered 40% of the primary vote, uniting behind Trump isn’t appealing to a huge part of the GOP.

From a founding principles standpoint, Trump’s never been part of the GOP. I’ve written about how Trump is anti-free speech. Trump isn’t a fan of the Second Amendment, either:

It’s often argued that the American murder rate is high because guns are more available here than in other countries. After a tragedy like the massacre at Columbine High School, anyone could feel that it is too easy for Americans to get their hands on weapons. But nobody has a good solution. This is another issue where you see the extremes of the two existing major parties. Democrats want to confiscate all guns, which is a dumb idea because only the law-abiding citizens would turn in their guns and the bad guys would be the only ones left armed. The Republicans walk the NRA line and refuse even limited restrictions. I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I also support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within seventy-two hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Trump isn’t a fan of the Fifth Amendment, either:

Trump, Coking and the casino authority pounded away at one another in court. Then, one day in the summer of 1998, the Superior Court of New Jersey put an end to the conflict. The court ruled that the casino authority and Trump were wrong. The government couldn’t take Coking’s house and let Trump have it.

The widow had won.

She lived there for about another decade, happy to boast about her triumph over a man she despised. From across a parking lot, she saw Trump’s casino fizzle. Last year, Trump Plaza closed its doors, another in a long line of casualties in the precipitous decay of a once-sizzling casino strip.

In addition to supporting eminent domain abuse, Trump’s fight with Vera Coking highlighted another thing conservatives should run from. Trump’s casino went bankrupt. It’s virtually impossible to bankrupt a casino but Trump ‘accomplished’ it.

These cries for party unity ring hollow in light of the fact that Trump’s flip-flops happen at a faster rate than Mitt Romney’s happened. Trump’s supporters don’t care because, apparently, a significant portion of them want to blow the Republican Party up. Thanks to principled conservatives like Walter Hudson, the Branch Trumpidians will have to fight to win that battle.

This article is this morning’s ray of hope for Minnesota’s constitution-loving patriots.

When Dave Unze wrote that “officers from Sauk Rapids and St. Cloud converged on Tyler Gottwalt” while he carried “a military-style rifle”, my initial reaction was that nothing good would come of the situation. It didn’t take long for Sauk Rapids and St. Cloud to reach different conclusions.

While “Sauk Rapids officers consulted with Benton County Attorney Philip Miller and … let Gottwalt go”, “St. Cloud officers disagreed and cited him for violating a city ordinance that prohibits carrying an uncased firearm in public.”

The good news, today’s ray of hope to constitutionalists, is that, following “a lengthy legal quarrel pitting a city ordinance against the state statute governing firearms,” “Stearns County District Court Judge Vicki Landwehr dismissed the charges against Gottwalt.”

I love this ruling. It isn’t because I’m advocating for people to carry AK-47s around St. Cloud. I love this ruling because it delivers a harsh reminder to cities that they can’t write gimmicky ordinances in the hope of overriding state statute.

While I love the outcome, I don’t like the fact that the city attorney didn’t notice the fact that this ordinance violated state statute. It’s one thing to be unaware of an ordinance that hasn’t been updated or repealed. I’d file that under ‘things happen’ or ‘they’re human’. When the arrest was made, though, City Attorney Matt Staehling should’ve tried finding out whether the city ordinance opposed state statutes.

Finally, Gottwalt should be compensated for his court costs because he never should’ve been through the system. The ordinance overstepped its authority once the state statute was passed.

Sen. Ben Sasse’s sassy questions for Donald Trump deserve an answer. Whether Mr. Trump will answer them or whether he’ll start criticizing Sen. Sasse, (R-NE), is anyone’s guess. Still, it’s worthwhile to find out the answers to Sen. Sasse’s questions.

Sen. Sasse’s first question for Mr. Trump was “Questn1. You said you want single-payer “gov’t pays4everyone” HCare. If that isn’t your position now when did it change? Why?” Next, Sen. Sasse asked “You’ve said you “hate the concept of guns.” Why the change? When did it happen? What’s the 2nd Amendment mean to you?” After that, Sen. Sasse asked “A few years ago, you proposed a $6 trillion tax hike. Still want to do that? Agree w/ Biden that higher taxes=more patriotism?”

I suspect that Sen. Sasse’s next question will earn him heaping helpings of criticism from Trumpsters. Sen. Sasse asked “You[‘ve] brag[ged] ab[ou]t many affairs w/ married women. Have you repented? To harmed children & spouses? Do you think it matters?” Sen. Sasse’s final question isn’t one that Trump’s supporters will like. Sen. Sasse asked:

Q5: I believe 1 of the most damaging things POTUS Obama did is ignore Constitution, act on his own,& bypass Congress Next GOP POTUS must roll this back & reaffirm a Constitutional system b4 we lose this special inheritance forever. Do you agree that exec unilateralism is very bad? Because you talk A LOT about “running the country” as though … as though 1 man should “run America.” Questn5: Will you commit to rolling back Exec power & undoing Obama unilateral habit?

Trump is a fascist who loves making deals. Principles aren’t part of his mindset. As long as critics say he got the better of the deal, Trump’s a happy camper. It doesn’t matter whether the ‘it’ is in keeping with the virtues laid out by the Founding Fathers.

Remember, this is the narcissist who wrote The Art of the Deal. Finally, it’s frightening to read this article about the things Mr. Trump has recently supported. Suffice it to say that the Founding Fathers would have a profound disagreement with Mr. Trump.

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Apparently, Gov. Dayton thinks that legislatures can pass laws that override the U.S. Constitution. This AP article says that Gov. Dayton “is urging legislators to ban gun sales to people on terrorism watch lists.” Notice that there’s been a subtle shift from Hillary’s speech about the nexus between terrorism and the national no-fly list.

The article continues, saying that Gov. Dayton “concluded he doesn’t have the authority to restrict those sales on his own.” He’s right. He doesn’t have that authority. Instead, he wants “the Legislature to pass such a law”, adding that “people who aren’t allowed to board airplanes shouldn’t be able to purchase guns.”

That law would never be enforced because the judiciary would halt enforcement in a New York minute. One of the people on the no-fly list was the late Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy. In a speech on the Senate floor, Sen. Dan Cotton, (R-AR), said that Sen. Kennedy “was on the list and couldn’t get off for weeks, having his flights disrupted time after time.”

If Minnesota passed a law that prevented people on the no-fly list from buying guns, they’d pass legislation that violates a person’s civil rights. That’s unacceptable because it’s unconstitutional.

Gov. Dayton swore an oath to uphold the Constitution. Stripping a person of their constitutional rights without due process is a direct violation of that oath.

During his speech from the Oval Office Sunday night, President Obama called on Congress to trample innocent people’s civil rights in the name of national security, saying “To begin with, Congress should act to make sure no one on a no-fly list is able to buy a gun. What could possibly be the argument for allowing a terrorist suspect to buy a semi-automatic weapon? This is a matter of national security.”

That’s interesting since the Washington Free Beacon reported that 72 employees of the Department of Homeland Security are on the Terrorist Watch List. Either there are lots of terrorists working at DHS or that list isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. I suspect it’s the latter. Either way, using that list to deny people the right to protect themselves would be a great injustice to the law-abiding people on that list.

That doesn’t mean I think everyone on the list is innocent and should have the right to purchase weapons. What I’m saying is that the TWL isn’t airtight and shouldn’t be used to determine a person’s civil rights status. Sen. Rubio explains it perfectly during this interview:

Chris Murphy is a Democratic senator from Connecticut and, as near as I can tell, a staunch advocate for censorship and a hater of religion. He can afford to be. He’s from Connecticut, which isn’t known for its deep religious roots.

Peggy Noonan is a former speechwriter for the greatest president of my lifetime, Ronald Reagan. She’s a gifted wordsmith and a lady of stature and dignity. Even when I disagree with her, which is occasionally, I still have immense respect for her. That’s because, at heart, she’s constantly cheering to see America at its best. She isn’t an ideologue. Instead, she’s a patriot. That’s why I couldn’t resist reading Ms. Noonan’s column about the fragile state of the First Amendment.

She noted that Sen. Murphy injected invective into the conversation about San Bernardino while it was happening, saying “Your ‘thoughts’ should be about steps to take to stop this carnage. Your ‘prayers’ should be for forgiveness if you do nothing—again.” Then Ms. Noonan made the observation that there’s “a real censorship movement backed by an ideology that is hostile to the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

Twenty years ago, that statement would’ve been laughed at. Today, thoughtful people furrow their brow and worry that Ms. Noonan is right. Then Ms. Noonan offered this insight into winning debates:

If you really are for some new gun-control measure, if you are serious about it, you just might wait a while, until the blood has cooled, for instance, and then try to win people over to see it your way. You might offer information, argument, points of persuasion. Successful politics involves pulling people together. You don’t use a tragedy to shame and silence those who don’t see it your way; that only hardens sides.

I won’t assume that Sen. Murphy is interested in winning a debate. (Ms. Noonan didn’t either.) It’s quite possible that Sen. Murphy only wants to speak up and be heard.

Now that the blood has started cooling, it’d be easy to criticize Sen. Murphy. I won’t do that, though. I’ll just add some information and, hopefully, a little insight into this nightmare. First, the information flooding in is that this wasn’t a criminal action as much as it was a terrorist attack. Though President Obama and the FBI have tap-danced around that possibility, the truth is that that proverbial train left the station when the FBI found literally thousands of rounds of ammunition, a bomb-making factory in the Farooks’ apartment and an assortment of pipe bombs and IED in the Farooks’ SUV.

The insight I have for Sen. Murphy is to start talking about how President Obama, the FBI and our other intelligence agencies can connect the terrorist network dots faster. They clearly were caught flat-footed on San Bernardino. Couple that with their unwillingness to call it what it obviously is and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.

This post is meant as a bit of a thank you to Ms. Noonan for writing something insightful on the subject of winning debate. Here’s hoping for more sanity to break out shortly.

It’s a good thing for President Obama that Charles C.W. Cooke doesn’t have a megaphone as big as the president’s. If he did, Mr. Cooke would’ve already have given the constitutional law professor the beating in mock court that he deserves. This post totally obliterates President Obama’s gun control arguments.

Cooke quotes President Obama from the president’s press conference as saying “We know other countries in response to one mass shooting have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings. Friends of ours, allies of ours, Great Britain, Australia, countries like ours. So we know there are ways to prevent it.” Shortly thereafter, Cooke demolishes that statement, saying that “Contrary to the president’s implications, Britain and Australia are not “countries like ours” when it comes to the right to keep and bear arms; they are completely, utterly, extraordinarily different. When the British government banned handguns in 1997, there were fewer than half a million in circulation.”

The question President Obama doesn’t want to get confronted with is how he figures nations that confiscate guns are like ours. The good news for President Obama is that the Praetorian Guard media will do its utmost to protect him from pesky questions like that. The bad news is that people in the heartland know the difference between nations that outright confiscate guns and the United States. That’s because the difference is quite dramatic.

This exchange is dramatic:

Frankly, Mr. Cooke let Mark Halperin paint himself into a corner. Once that’d happened, the debate was over.

Hillary’s panderfest on the Charleston shootings was a portrait of the type of ‘leadership’ she’d bring to the White House. Here’s what she said that’s dangerous:

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton challenged the nation Thursday to take new actions to curb gun violence in her first reactions to the shooting inside a historically black Charleston, S.C., church that left nine dead.

“How many people do we need to see cut down before we act?” she asked, during a summit of elected and appointed Latino politicians meeting in Las Vegas. She began by saying that her thoughts and prayers were with the victims and their families in the shooting, before turning to a broader discussion of police. “So as we mourn and as our hearts break a little more, and as we send this message of solidarity that we will not forsake those who have been victimized by gun violence, this time we have to find answers together,” Clinton said.

That thinking is straight from the progressives’ surely-we-must-do-something chapter of their strategy handbook. It’s filled with emotion, which is understandable. Unfortunately, it’s equally devoid of constructive ideas, much less solutions.

This is essentially Hillary’s “I feel your pain” moment. That’s nice but saying that we have to curb gun violence, then not offering a solution is cruel.

Let’s unwind this a bit. The alleged murderer was a bigot who’d been in trouble with the law relatively frequently. That’s indisputable, verified fact. He’d gotten kicked out of a Charleston shopping mall and told never to return. Instead of never returning, he tried returning, only to get thrown out again.

His punishment for these actions? His father bought him a handgun for his birthday. There are laws already on the books that prohibit criminals from owning guns. Would another law covering the same thing matter? I’m betting it wouldn’t. BTW, I’d prosecute the father for supplying the weapon to his obviously deranged son.

Remember that the alleged murderer was a bigot. He read skinhead literature, too. One of his friends said that he’d planned this “for 6 months.” There’s another human failure. If this friend knew this, why didn’t he contact authorities?

Finally, what gun control legislation would’ve prevented this heinous crime? We know that gun control laws that’ve been proposed in the last 5 years wouldn’t have stopped Sandy Hook or Aurora or the shooting of Gabby Giffords.

The first step to solving these violence issues is for Democrats to stop blaming the guns. The people who’ve done these killings are violent individuals. Until you change people’s hearts, no laws will matter.

If you’re looking for a heaping helping of in-your-face Second Amendment activism, you’ve come to the right place. Enjoy:

This article illustrates 2 things. First, it’s proof that progressives don’t understand conservatism. Next, it’s proof that progressives are still fighting hard to prop Chris Christie up. Let’s look at that last point first in this paragraph:

The New Jersey governor is down, but not out. He’s putting all his chips on winning the Granite State, and the positive reception he received here showed that it’s probably the best bet he can make with his limited options.

Chris Christie is history. This weekend, Jazz Shaw wrote this post about Gov. Christie. Here’s the key point:

The Second Amendment was always going to be a tricky question for Christie as he attempts to navigate his way from being a successful executive in the very blue state of New Jersey to a prospective leader on the national level. After all, he is governor of the state with the second most horrible gun laws in the nation. Christie has, in the past, made a similar argument on this point as he has with other conservative issues. There is little he can do about it, or so the argument goes, because the Democrats run the legislature with an iron grip and he can’t summon new laws out of thin air on his own. To a certain extent that may be true, and it’s a defense which has been used by Republicans in traditionally liberal states to good effect in the past. But when you’re running for president it doesn’t really change the fact that you’re still the governor of the state with the second most horrible gun laws in the nation.

Jazz is right that Gov. Christie can’t create laws just by wishing them into existence. After all, he isn’t President Obama. What Christie could’ve done, though, is pushed for more NRA-friendly gun laws. There isn’t much in the way of proof that Gov. Christie fought for more Second Amendment-friendly legislation.

Next, let’s look at whether progressives understand conservatives. First, I’ll note that Gov. Christie isn’t a conservative. He’s a Republican, not a conservative. Next, let’s admit that any Republican with national aspirations can’t flinch on Second Amendment issues. That Republican can’t even hesitate in their support of the Second Amendment. A flinch is that politician’s death knell. Period.