Several 2020 Democratic presidential candidates have come out in support of “no fly, no buy” gun control policies, but some argue that the policy may be racially motivated.
As IJR reported earlier, Senator Elizabeth Warren was the first major 2020 candidate to float a reconsideration of “no fly, no buy” legislation. This policy would require gun buyers to run their name through the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “No Fly List” before purchasing a firearm. The “No Fly List” is a list of terror suspects that are not allowed to board flights in the United States due to a calculated risk assumed by DHS.
Because no judge needs to approve the “No Fly List,” many believe that the policy breaches Americans’ right to due process, a point brought up by “Morning Joe” guest host Willie Geist during a Monday morning interview with South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-Ind.).
During the interview Buttigieg (D-Ind.) announced support for the “No Fly, No Buy” policy, claiming that it could prevent people who are a “present threat” from accessing a weapon. Geist then asked him to justify the policy against the risks that someone was accidentally placed on the list.
Pete Buttigieg also backs the "no fly, no buy" for guns: Yes. I mean look, the whole idea of our framework for gun safety is to make sure people who are a clear and present threat can't get access to these weapons. pic.twitter.com/rNcZQsTH1O
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) March 20, 2019
Buttigieg: I mean look, the whole idea of our framework for gun safety is to make sure people who are a clear and present threat can’t get access to these weapons.
Geist: As you know, some people on that terror watch list are there for no good reason. Should they have their Second Amendment rights denied?
Buttigieg: As a former counterterrorism officer, I believe we need to tune-up the system. Look, we can improve the system and also make sure that, of all the problems with American safety, people who have been flagged as a terrorist threat not being able to get a gun in time because the flag may have been unfair is not the biggest problem we have in America.
While Buttigieg doesn’t appear to have a problem with individual rights potentially being put on hold, others have found a problem beyond the breach of due process. Many people on the “No Fly List” are from racial minority groups, meaning that a disproportionate percentage of non-white Americans could have gun access limited.
days after one of the worst mass shootings against muslims in recent memory, both elizabeth warren & kirsten gillibrand are subtly targeting muslims and arabs in the u.s. with the no fly, no buy gun proposal.
the terror watchlist is arbitrary and circumvents due process. period. https://t.co/zSlnFHaFQH
— siraj hashmi (@SirajAHashmi) March 19, 2019
the left’s push to ban people on the terror watchlist from purchasing a gun is inherently islamophobic and anti-arab bc you don’t have to be a convicted criminal to end up on the list. you could simply share a name with a terrorist to get on there. https://t.co/0vxBqInO9p
— siraj hashmi (@SirajAHashmi) March 18, 2019
So, while 2020 supporters of the “No Fly List” may not be afraid to tip-toe around the due process issue, they may have a more difficult time explaining why they support a policy that could limit the rights of certain groups, but not others.