Sen Kristen Gillibrand, D-New York, is close by the bottom of the large pack of Democratic presidential candidates in every poll taken.
Gillibrand hoped that by addressing a national audience on a Fox News Townhall she could change her fortunes. She failed going out the gate, stumbling and ranting her way through the gun issue.
Gillibrand started the Townhall with a rant against the National Rifle Association. She apparently believed that the NRA is the most malignant organization in the United States, reveling in its blood-soaked profits that it garners by opposing “common sense” gun control laws.
The NRA is apparently worse than ISIS or MS-13. One would think that by the way the senator talked, it was in favor of late-term abortion, government-run health care, and the Green New Deal.
Chris Wallace, who was moderating the Townhall and is one of FNC’s greatest treasures, was taking note of what Gillibrand was saying.
Then he pounced.
Noting that none of the “common sense” gun control measures Gillibrand proposed would have stopped the recent massacre in Virginia Beach, he added, “Your campaign slogan is ‘Brave Wins,’ but when you [represented] a conservative district…you took pretty conservative positions on guns…once you became the Senator for the entire liberal state of NY, you flipped. How is that brave?”
He went on to note that the flip flop seemed to be “more about politics than principles.”
Gillibrand, who was unable to give a coherent answer, had made one crucial mistake that as an experienced politician she should not have made.
She did not think that Chris Wallace, who has spent years interviewing politicians, had done his homework on her career and previous positions.
Wallace knew before the Townhall had started that Gillibrand had been a warm supporter of the NRA before she had been elected to statewide office in deep blue New York.
The senator should have known that the matter would be brought up and thus concoct a story about how she had gotten an epiphany about how horrible private firearms are and what a terrible organization the NRA is.
She also would not have stated as she did that the NRA sells firearms. It does not and is a fact that is easily checked.
Gillibrand’s woes did not end with having humiliated herself on national television. The NRA, no doubt miffed by the senator’s accusations, dug out a 2008 letter from the then-congresswoman praising the organization that she now thinks is the worse in the country.
According to Fox News:
“Gillibrand, according to the NRA, sent the letter to NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox on Sept. 19, 2008, when she was a member of Congress representing a rural district in upstate New York. The ILA, or Institute for Legislative Action, is the lobbying arm of the NRA.
“’I want to be very clear that I always have and always will believe that the correct interpretation of the 2nd amendment [sic] is that it applies to an individual’s right to carry guns, and does not apply generally to the National Guard or a group of individuals in a State,’ Gillibrand wrote to Cox, following what she described as a meeting with him the previous August.
“Gillibrand, in the letter, went on to reject a slew of gun control measures, saying she was “adamantly opposed” to the idea ‘outright banning firearms for cosmetic features, bullets of an [sic] random size, or banning magazines from holding an arbitrary number of cartridges.’
“Those limitations, she said, were ‘random’ and intended solely to ‘limit gun ownership or usage.’
“Gillibrand concluded: ‘I appreciate the work that the NRA does to protect gun owners rights, and I look forward to working with you for many years.’”
The NRA suggested that the senator’s rant was a desperate attempt to crack how one percent rating in the polls.
It is safe to say the Kristen Gillibrand is not going to break up to the top tier because of her cringe-worthy performance. She is not going to be President of the United States, a fact that the smart money was on even before she appeared on Fox News.
Gillibrand’s experience demonstrates that if a politician making his or her case is to be exposed to a national audience, he or she has to make sure of one of two things.
First, make sure that the interviewer is friendly. Chris Wallace will not give anyone softballs. Failing that, Gillibrand should have been more prepared.
She failed and is now paying the price.