By Larry Keane
If you thought Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke’s public pledge to confiscate AR-15’s was bold and shocking, buckle up for billionaire Michael Bloomberg. He’s again toying with a run at the White House and if he does, he’s already poured millions into turning elections into anti-gun referendums.
This would be his all-out blitzkrieg against guns.
The former New York City mayor, who has switched political parties quickly as the winds shift, is reportedly reconsidering his previous decision to sit out the Democrat primary. He reportedly sees an opportunity to wedge his way in as former Vice President Joe Biden has been stumbling on the national stage and slipping in the polls as U.S. Sen. Elizabeth “Faux-ahontas” Warren gains political market share.
Gun Control Cash Cow
The 77-year-old never gave up visions of pushing his anti-gun campaign on the national stage. He funds the gun control groups Moms Demand Action and Everytown for Gun Safety. Everytown is leading gun control campaign spending at nearly $1 million. The group pledged $2.5 million to flip Virginia state elections for Democrats who will pass a far-left gun control platform favored by Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam to ban modern sporting rifles, standard capacity magazines, suppressors and institute one-gun-a-month sales quotas.
Bloomberg’s also targeting Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) because he won’t bring up constitutionally suspect gun control bills that won’t reduce crime and make our communities safer, but they will limit Second Amendment freedoms. He is also targeting Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, both Florida Republicans, Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and John Cornyn (R-Tex.) who authored the Fix NICS legislation that actually improved background checks.
Bloomberg’s presidential apparatus was never really dismantled, as it turns out. Even while he made his public announcement in March that he would not run for president, he’s kept advisors close and on his payroll. He previously pledged to spend $100 million on his presidential aspirations. That’s on top of the $500 million he dangled to defeat President Donald Trump in 2020, whether Bloomberg jumped into the race or not. That’s not much for the man who’s reportedly worth $50 billion.
That money buys a lot of anti-gun airtime. If Bloomberg jumps in, expect yet another candidate to call for confiscating the more than 16 million lawfully-owned modern sporting rifles in America today. Magazine bans will be at the forefront. Gun rationing would be real. Biden’s clueless ideas of so-called “smart gun” technology requirement for guns would be adopted and Andrew Yang’s gun licensing scheme to exercise basic America rights wouldn’t be so implausible.
In fact, none of the gun control or confiscation plans would be far-fetched. They’d just be far outside Americans’ price range.
Larry Keane is Senior Vice President of Government and Public Affairs and General Counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry trade association.