During the Democratic presidential candidates’ debate last Thursday, O’Rourke dropped the pretense that he “jealously guard[s]” gun owners’ Second Amendment rights. When ABC moderator David Muir asked him whether it’s true that he would force owners of semiautomatic rifles — “You know that critics call this confiscation. Are you proposing taking away their guns?” — the former Texas congressman was bluntness itself:
“Hell, yes!” he replied, as the audience of Democratic Party activists cheered. “We’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47.”
Within the hour, the O’Rourke campaign put out a fundraising tweet playing up his anti-gun stance. Under a picture of an AR-15, it proclaimed: “Beto has a ban for that.” Forty-five minutes later, the campaign was marketing a new T-shirt. “HELL YES WE’RE GOING TO TAKE YOUR AR-15” it says in red, white, and blue letters. ($30; available in sizes from XS to 3XL).
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