According to OnTheIssues.org, in 2010 then gubernatorial candidate Rick Snyder's campaign website contained the following in regards to whether or not he would support the 2nd Amendment and the rights of gun owners:
"In one word: absolutely. I actually own three guns myself. I have a 12 gauge shotgun and two .22 rifles that I use for target shooting. I believe the 2nd amendment also protects the right of citizens to have a gun in their home to protect their family and property. I also support the rights of gun owners to responsibly carry their gun, as long as they have attained the legal permit. While I'm not an avid hunter, I support the industry and believe it plays an important role in our economy and quality of life. It also can have a valuable environmental conservation impact and I would work to streamline the processes so that hunters get better customer service from the state and local governments. We have a long tradition in our state of supporting gun rights and the hunting industry in Michigan and I would continue to support that tradition as Governor."
Now there are two big problems with the highlighted portion. The first problem is that rights and permits are mutually exclusive. A right, by definition, is something that belongs fundamentally to everyone, as opposed to a permit which gives you the ability to do something you couldn't otherwise do. The second problem is that when Gov. Snyder was given the opportunity to backup his words he folded.
In 2012, SB 59 was passed by the Michigan Legislature and reached Gov. Snyder's desk for signing. SB 59, in part, did away with "Pistol Free Zones" by allowing those with Concealed Pistol licenses to carry in the existing zones, but only after obtaining additional training and applying for an enhanced license. Essentially, law-abiding gun owners that have permits on top of their permits. Right down Gov. Sndyer's alley, right? Wrong! Gov. Snyder vetoed SB 59. Read more on that here: Rick Snyder on Gun Free Zones
Here is why Gov. Snyder said he vetoed the bill:
"While we must vigilantly protect the rights of law-abiding firearm owners, we also must ensure the right of designated public entities to exercise their best discretion in matters of safety and security,"
"These public venues need clear legal authority to ban firearms on their premises if they see fit to do so."
When given the opportunity, Gov. Snyder reneged, went back on his word and threw gun owners under the bus.
Now the story doesn't end there. Gov. Snyder is now up for re-election and he seems to have acquired a rather interesting supporter. Former New York Mayor and staunch gun-control proponent Michael Bloomberg is now supporting Gov. Snyder to the tune of millions of dollars. Coincidence? Perhaps, if you believe there is such a thing in politics.
One last thing, if you think the veto of SB 59 had anything to do with Sandy Hook happening the next day, you're sadly mistaken. According to the Washington Post (Quoting the Detroit News) Senator Mike Green (the lead sponsor of SB 59) said:
The bill's sponsor, state Sen. Mike Green (R), said that Snyder wanted language in the bill that would allow public schools to ban concealed weapons. He refused, fearing it could be used to overturn a law that prohibits local firearms laws from trumping state laws.
"They told us Thursday night [the night before the bill passed] he'd veto it if we didn't include that language," Green told the paper. "We just said 'enough's enough' and we passed it."
In a statement following the veto, Green said he was "deeply disappointed" in Snyder's decision. "The message being sent to law-abiding folks with a license now is that if you wish to protect yourselves and your families from tragedy in these areas, you’ll have to carry openly without additional training," he said.
Now Snyder is a candidate again. His actions over these past 4 years speak louder than his words 4 years ago.