Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), the House Majority Whip, isn’t sure if the Bill of Rights would be able to pass given how radical the political climate is nowadays.
The Democratic congressman noted how far the left has drifted, going as far as doubting the survival of the Bill of Rights after seeing the attacks that leftists have launched on the First and Second Amendments, during his appearance on MSNBC.
The First Amendment prohibits Congress from making laws respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise of religion, or abridge the freedom of speech, the freedom of the press, the right to peaceably assemble, or the right to petition the government.
The Second Amendment protects an individual’s right to possess a firearm unconnected with military service, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as for self-defense within the home.
“I really believe sincerely, with the climate that we’re in today, that if the Bill of Rights—the first 10 amendments of the United States Constitution—were put before the public today, I’m not too sure that we would hold onto the Bill of Rights,” Clyburn told MSNBC. “Especially when I see what people are doing with the Second Amendment. And no telling what they would do with the First Amendment.”
When met with disbelief from the host David Gura, Clyburn reassured him that this was indeed what he believed.
“Absolutely. There would be a strong support against the Bill of Rights. Go through the Bill of Rights and I’ll tell you I run into people every day who would like to see so much of those guarantees uprooted,” Clyburn replied.
Although Clyburn didn’t explicitly blame the Democratic Party for the erosion of free speech and one’s right to own firearms for self-defense pertaining to the Second Amendment, his words have strongly suggested that this it the case.
“You don’t tear stuff up in order to ‘improve on it,’” Clyburn said. “Let’s look at what’s wrong. Let’s look at what can be improved and let’s go out and work together to improve these things—not just throw things out and say, ‘Let’s start over.’”
“No. No. We don’t start over in this country.” Clyburn said in reference to Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to repeal the controversial 1994 Clinton-era crime bill, which she has argued disproportionately targets low-income and minority communities. It includes the infamous “three-strike rule.”
“We correct our faults,” he said.
Clyburn is the third-highest ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives.