The Second Amendment is available to oppose President Trump should he flaunt the Constitution, Democratic New York Rep. Thomas Suozzi said at a town hall in Huntington, New York on March 12.
Video surfaced of Suozzi responding to a town hall attendee’s question about the constitutional remedy for the president failing to “execute a mandate.” It was obtained by the New York Post.
“It’s really a matter of putting public pressure on the president,” Suozzi replied. “This is where the Second Amendment comes in, quite frankly, because you know, what if the president was to ignore the courts? What would you do? What would we do?”
Right on cue, a town hall attendee in the audience asked Suozzi, “What’s the Second Amendment?”
“The Second Amendment is the right to bear arms,” he replied.
While the video shows there was laughter at the town hall, the National Republican Congressional Committee did not find it funny.
“It’s surreal to watch a sitting member of Congress suggest that his constituents should take up arms against the President of the United States,” NRCC spokesman Chris Martin said.
As reported by Roll Call, the Suozzi campaign forwarded a Thomas Jefferson quote that only added fuel to the fire.
“What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms,” the Jefferson quote reads in a famous 1787 letter to William Smith, which also contained the memorable phrase, “the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants.”
Suozzi adviser Kim Devlin reassures those offended by the Congressman’s statement that it’s all a misunderstanding, then implies that the congressman’s remarks are taken out of context.
“Taking a page from such great Americans as Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Alexander Hamilton, Congressman Suozzi explained why our founding fathers created the 2nd amendment as a way for citizens to fight back against a tyrannical government that does not follow the rule of law,” he said. “To suggest his comments meant anything else or that he was advocating for an armed insurrection against the existing president is both irresponsible and ridiculous.”
Donald Trump made a similar remark at a North Carolina campaign rally about the threat to gun rights a potential President Hillary Clinton posed with Supreme Court nominations. Trump said that there would be nothing gun control supporters could do, then corrected himself.
“Although the Second Amendment people — maybe there is, I don’t know,” he said.