Washington Report – Hillary’s True Colors

whitehouseIt’s springtime in Washington. Along with the cherry blossoms, tourist hordes and other signs of the season, candidates for President are emerging to make their bids official.   Hunters will have a variety of excellent choices on the Republican side of the primary ballot. Democrats, on the other hand, are expected to fall in line and be content with the coronation of Hillary.

Virtually all of the Republican candidates — whether officially declared or still potential – have long and solid records in support of hunters’ rights. The exception is Chris Christie, whose political teeth were cut in the rabidly anti-gun state of New Jersey. His proponents will argue that political success in that state requires a certain degree of “balance” on gun and hunting issues. But at this writing it’s unclear whether he will ever officially join the field, so let’s save that debate for another day.

On the question of Hillary’s record, however, there is no debate. She and her husband presided over the most anti-gun, anti-hunting administration in American history. But come Election Day, 16 years will have passed since the Clintons’ final days in the White House. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it, so let’s review how hunters were treated in the first Clinton presidency.

The Clintons appointed anti-hunting zealots to powerful administration posts, then let them run amok. The Clintons also personally worked hand-in-glove with gun control groups to push through the two most significant federal gun control laws since the passage of the Gun Control Act of 1968. Anti-gun extremists were given free rein of the White House, and the administration dedicated high-level staffers to implement their wish lists. And the involvement of the Clintons in these issues was intensely personal, unlike many politicians who are detached and aloof in their attacks on our rights.

Political memories can be very short, and few among us still remember that the Clinton administration engaged in outright theft from American hunters. Bill Clinton appointed Jamie Rappaport Clark as director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). (Clark is now the CEO of Defenders of Wildlife, a group that claims as its mission the “protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities.”)

Hunters are keenly aware of the excise tax we pay on guns, ammunition and archery equipment. In place since 1937 and later expanded to cover fishing equipment, the tax revenue is kept separate from general government funds, and there are strict limitations on how the funds can be spent. The vast majority of the funding must be sent to state wildlife agencies to expand habitat and manage the populations of game and fish.

But the Government Accounting Office found that under Clinton, it became “one of the worst managed programs we have ever encountered,” with such poor documentation that they could never be sure how much money was misappropriated.

wolfinwoodsfirstforhunters012914Money was spent to fund globe-trotting travel, lavish meals, liquor and limousines. One bureaucrat referred to the tax revenue as “my slush fund,” and the diverted money was spent on pet projects of Bill Clinton and Al Gore. One such project was the reintroduction of the gray wolf. That reintroduction was cited as the justification for why FWS staff made an incredible 79 trips to Canada in just eight years.

We all know how that turned out.   We’re still cleaning up the mess with no end in sight. But few of us remember that it was made possible by the theft of hunters’ dollars, organized and sanctioned by the Clinton White House.   This particular scandal would not end until the Congress passed new legislation, championed by our friend Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), to specify precisely how hunter tax dollars could and could not be spent going forward. Of course, no one was ever punished, except for the whistleblowers who revealed the scheme.

That’s just one example. Hillary has also made her feelings known about our Second Amendment rights many times over the years. Here’s just a brief sample:

June 1999: “We’ve made some progress in the last several years with the Brady Bill and some of the bans on assault weapons, but we have a lot of work to do.”

June 2000:  “I stand in support of this common-sense legislation to license everyone who wishes to purchase a gun,” she says. “I also believe that every new handgun sale or transfer should be registered in a national registry.”

June 2014: “We’ve got to rein in what has become an almost article of faith that anyone can have a gun anywhere, anytime.”

June 2014: Referring to gun owners, Clinton says, “We cannot let a minority of people — and that’s what it is, it is a minority of people — hold a viewpoint that terrorizes the majority of people.”

That last quote captures the real Hillary. She believes gun owners are terrorists, and accuses us of Orwellian thoughtcrime.

It’s been estimated that Hillary and her allies will spend $2 billion to remake her image, and convince the electorate that she stands for “everyday Americans” – whatever that means. But hunters already know the real Hillary – and we’ve seen more than enough.

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