Bloomberg’s Jonathan Allen sounds a little desperate to make a controversy for Scott Walker with Second Amendment voters. His headline was “Scott Walker Once Backpedaled After Supporting Wisconsin Gun-Control Bill: His flirtation with the issue could create an opportunity for competitors.”
Briefly, Walker backed a bill that “could have jailed gun dealers who sold weapons without trigger locks—and the people who bought them.” But he dumped out of it shortly after gun-rights groups protested, and the bill died. So what’s the big rift?
Walker, at the time a junior member of the state assembly, briefly co-sponsored a bill in 1995 making it illegal for any federally licensed gun dealer in the state to sell a weapon that wasn't secured with a trigger lock, and also made it illegal to buy one. The penalty: fines of up to $10,000 and jail sentences of up to nine months.
Now that Walker is preparing to run for president—and seen by some as the early frontrunner for the Republican nomination—his flirtation with gun control could create an opportunity for competitors who have been more pure on the issue to question the depth of Walker's anti-gun-control beliefs.
Walker’s flacks even pointed out that he earned an A-plus from the National Rifle Association in that same year, so no-harm, no-foul. But Bloomberg – the “news” service owned by Michael Bloomberg, the nation’s biggest gun-control financier – perhaps wants to make this a defining GOP fight:
A spokeswoman for Walker's political action committee said she could not provide details of Walker's decision to sponsor the bill, or to back away from it.
“It was one bill 20 years ago and he has had an A+ NRA rating that year and subsequent years, so it’s not something he was championing,” Kirsten Kukowski said.
Jonathan Allen is the same journalist who wrote an entire book honoring Hillary Clinton without ever locating an e-mail controversy. So you might want to question why he’s making a mountain out of this molehill.