But Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is arguing that the Second Amendment includes a right to revolt against government tyranny, a point of emphasis uncommon for mainstream presidential candidates.
“The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution isn’t for just protecting hunting rights, and it’s not only to safeguard your right to target practice. It is a Constitutional right to protect your children, your family, your home, our lives, and to serve as the ultimate check against governmental tyranny — for the protection of liberty,” Cruz wrote to supporters in a fundraising email on Thursday, under the subject line “2nd Amendment against tyranny.”
This “insurrectionist” argument, as Second Amendment expert and UCLA law professor Adam Winkler calls it, is popular among passionate gun owners and members of the National Rifle Association. But major party candidates for president don’t often venture there.
“Most presidential candidates who support Second Amendment rights focus on self defense. In the past many have also emphasized hunting,” said Winkler, author of the 2011 book Gunfight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America. “It’s pretty rare for a presidential candidate to support the right of the people to revolt against the government.” (Read more from “Ted Cruz: Americans Need Guns Just in Case They Need to Shoot the Government” HERE)