Your Comprehensive Guide to Kamala Harris and The Second Amendment

kamala second amendment

With her selection as the Democratic Party’s nominee for Vice President of the United States, Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) would be the proverbial heartbeat away from the presidency should Joe Biden win on November 3. So where does she stand on major issues surrounding the Second Amendment? This is no small matter – Harris could potentially be making decisions that would affect the rights of millions of law-abiding gun owners.

How She Went From A Career Prosecutor to the United States Senate

Senator Harris has touted her career as a prosecutor. According to the official site of California’s Office of the Attorney General, she spent eight years with the Alameda County District Attorney’s office (1990-1998) and six years with the San Francisco District Attorney (1998-2004). During her time in those offices, she also picked up two side gigs.

The Daily Mail noted that she was appointed to the California Medical Assistance Commission and the Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board. The two jobs had a combined salary of $169,088. At the time of those appointments, Harris was dating then-California Assembly Speaker Willie Brown. By the time she ran for District Attorney, she and Brown had split

From 2004 to 2010, she was the District Attorney in San Francisco, and used that as a launching pad to become attorney general of California. In 2016, she won the election to replace Barbara Boxer as California’s junior Senator.

On Interpreting the Second Amendment

There has been some recent controversy over Facebook proclaiming Ammoland’s coverage of Senator Harris’s positions on the Second Amendment as fake news. The social media giant cited reporting from Agence France Presse, per John Crump’s reporting here.

Here’s the straight scoop: As the landmark Heller case, in which Washington D.C.’s handgun ban was challenged on Second Amendment grounds, was being heard by the Supreme Court, Harris, as District Attorney of San Francisco, sought to have the court uphold the ban.

In a brief filed by a number of district attorneys from big cities across the country, Harris was among those who stated, “the three D.C. Code provisions at issue in this appeal do not violate the Second Amendment, thus necessitating a reversal of the lower court’s decision.” The Supreme Court did not agree, striking down D.C.’s onerous laws in a 5-4 ruling.

In the McDonald case, which resulted in the Supreme Court invalidating Chicago’s handgun ban when it held the Second Amendment applied to the states under the terms of the 14th Amendment, Harris was not among the district attorneys who urged the high court to invalidate the onerous provision. Again, the Supreme Court’s decision came by a 5-4 margin.

On her campaign website for President, Harris boasted about how “she stood up to the gun lobby and successfully defended California’s gun violence prevention laws to legal challenge.”

Background Checks and Waiting Periods

Harris has supported more onerous burdens on those seeking to purchase firearms. During her time as Attorney General, she defended the state’s 10-day waiting period in the Silvester case. The Ninth Circuit upheld the limits, while the Supreme Court refused to review that decision.

As a Senator, Harris has co-sponsored a number of bills that sought either “universal” background checks, to extend the amount of time someone could potentially have to wait, or to retain records.

This included the Background Check Completion Act in 2017 and 2020, which would have eliminated any deadline to transfer a firearm when the National Instant Check System called for a delay. She also backed the Background Check Expansion Act in 2017 and 2019, which would have mandated background checks on all firearms transfers.

On her campaign site, Harris stated that one of the executive actions she would take if Congress didn’t pass new gun laws in 100 days would center on background checks.

Microstamping and Other “Back-Door” Gun Bans

During her time as Attorney General, Harris did take an action that points to her threats of using executive action to ban firearms. According to Reason magazine, in 2013, she triggered provisions of California’s microstamping law that in effect, banned new models of semi-automatic pistols.

The Truth About Guns also reported that on Harris’s watch, the Handgun Roster was also used to effectively ban new models of handguns, turning the state into “a test bed for the forces of civilian disarmament.”

“Assault Weapons” and Standard-Capacity Magazines

Harris has long pursued bans on modern multi-purpose semiautomatic firearms, which she and other anti-Second Amendment politicians have labeled as “assault weapons.” These efforts date back to at least 2004, when she supported efforts to keep the 1994 legislation from expiring.

After Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) introduced a new ban on modern semiautomatic firearms in the wake of the December 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Harris released a statement saying, “Senator Feinstein’s renewed call to reactivate the federal assault weapons ban and to ban high-capacity magazines is in the best interest of public safety. These weapons of war are too often used to take innocent lives and do not belong on our streets.  I was proud to stand with Senator Feinstein when she fought to restore the ban in 2004, and I am proud to stand with her again today.”

In 2016, while in the midst of her run for the United States Senate, she teamed up with Assemblyman David Chiu on a tightening of California’s already onerous semiauto ban. According to a release from the California attorney general’s office, the legislation would have banned so-called  “bullet button” modifications.

When elected to the Senate, Harris has co-sponsored Feinstein’s legislation to create a stricter version of the 1994 semiauto ban in 2017 and 2019. She also co-sponsored legislation by Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) to ban many standard-capacity magazines in 2017 and 2019.

As of this writing, a three-judge panel from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the magazine ban was unconstitutional, citing the Heller case. It should also be noted that Justice Department statistics show that rifles and shotguns are rarely used in homicides.

Harris has also not been above the use of emotional blackmail to overcome logic, at one point saying that Senators should have to view autopsy photos of the victims of school shootings like Newtown and Parkland before voting on semiauto bans.

Firearms Accessories

In addition to magazine bans, Harris has also targeted other firearms accessories. In 2017, she signed on to Feinstein’s legislation targeting certain stocks and trigger modifications. The “assault weapons” legislation she has co-sponsored also would ban firearms based on the use of certain accessories.

Concealed Carry

As California’s top lawyer, Harris defended its “may issue” laws in court – even as those laws became “non-issue” in several jurisdictions. In 2014, she condemned the district court’s ruling in Peruta v. California.

“Local law enforcement must be able to use their discretion to determine who can carry a concealed weapon,” she said in the statement. “I will do everything possible to restore law enforcement’s authority to protect public safety, and so today am calling on the court to review and reverse its decision.”

Upon the Ninth Circuit’s ruling in 2016, she called the preservation of California’s “may issue” law “a victory for public safety and sensible gun safety laws” that “ensures that local law enforcement leaders have the tools they need to protect public safety by determining who can carry loaded, concealed weapons in our communities.”

Gun Owner Privacy

Harris has also deemed those who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights as not deserving privacy. In 2020, she co-sponsored the Senate version of the Tiahrt Restrictions Repeal Act. In a press release issued by her office, she claimed, “Access to gun data is vital to law enforcement’s ability to solve gun crimes and keep our communities safe.”

Targeting Firearms Manufacturers and Dealers

Harris’s assaults on the Second Amendment have not been limited to those law-abiding citizens who wish to own firearms. She has also targeted firearms manufacturers and dealers.

Harris supported legislation to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act in 2017 and 2019. This would enable big cities to file lawsuits against firearms manufacturers over the criminal misuse of firearms – and open them up to blackmail in the form of being bankrupted by legal expenses unless they agree to an anti-Second Amendment agenda that has been rejected by voters numerous times. She also laid out repeal of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act as part of her agenda should she become president.

In 2018 and 2019, Harris also backed legislation that would increase red tape for firearms dealers.

Targeting Firearms Hobbyists

Hobbyists who like to build their own firearms for personal use have also been targeted by Senator Harris over her career. She co-sponsored the 3D Printed Gun Safety Act in 2018 and 2019, which not only affected those who wish to manufacture their own guns or parts, but which also carries significant First Amendment implications as well.

Harris also co-sponsored the Senate version of the Untraceable Firearms Act in 2020, which targeted other home manufacturers of firearms for their personal use.

First Amendment

Senator Harris has also backed legislation that would restrict the ability of those who support the Second Amendment to make their voices heard. In 2019, she signed on to the “For the People Act,” which seeks, among other things, a constitutional amendment to overturn some of the free speech protections reaffirmed in the Citizens United ruling. During her presidential campaign, she vowed to appoint federal judges who would overturn the Citizens United ruling.

Her efforts when granted power to enforce laws were aimed at political opponents. During her tenure as attorney general in California, she also targeted a prominent conservative group, seeking information on its donors according to Breitbart News. The court battle is currently pending.

Senator Harris also co-sponsored the Senate version of legislation to punish some criminal actions more harshly based on the views of the offender in 2019.

Harris has also supported efforts to resume taxpayer-funded anti-Second Amendment propaganda, co-sponsoring bills in 2019 and 2017 to allow the Centers for Disease Control to push flawed and biased research.

Due Process

Senator Harris has also favored legislation that would seize firearms while trampling all over due process protections for those who would be subjected to a loss of their rights. In 2017 and 2019, she co-sponsored a “red flag” law that denied basic protections to those who would be ordered to give up their firearms. A number of other bills she co-sponsored like 2017’s Protecting Domestic Violence and Stalking Victims Act (also introduced in 2019), would add penalties to people who were convicted of crimes prior to the date of the law’s enactment.

It should be noted that Senator Harris has co-sponsored a number of other bills with similar provisions, including the 2019 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.


In short, when Senator Harris claims to support the Second Amendment, she is not telling the truth. The facts show that she has been an avowed enemy of the rights of law-abiding gun owners. Whether it is supporting bans on firearms, denying people the ability to carry firearms for personal protection, depriving gun owners of privacy and due process, or targeting manufacturers and dealers, she has not been on the side of freedom.

Quite frankly, Harris has one of the most anti-Second Amendment track records we at Ammoland have ever seen for a person on a major party’s presidential ticket. She will be a heartbeat away from the presidency should Joe Biden win. Second Amendment supporters should cast their votes accordingly.

About Harold HutchisonHarold Hutchison

Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post,, and other national websites.


Comments are closed.