Gun Rights

Dems Want to Force You to Buy Insurance…on Your Gun

Second Amendment

Democrats probably feel pretty full of themselves after the Supreme Court argued that the government could force you to buy health insurance under their taxation powers.  Well, it looks like they’ve really embraced that and are now looking to make you buy additional insurance…if you own one of those evil gun things!

From The Daily Caller:

When New York Rep. Carolyn Maloney introduced the legislation last month with eight other Democrats, she boasted that it is “the first bill to require liability insurance of gun buyers nationwide.”

Maloney’s “Firearm Risk Protection Act” requires gun buyers to have “a qualified liability insurance policy” before they are able to legally purchase a firearm.

It also calls for the federal government to impose a fine as much as $10,000 if a gun owner doesn’t have insurance on a firearm purchased after the bill goes into effect.

“It shall be unlawful for a person who owns a firearm purchased on or after the effective date of this subsection not to be covered by a qualified liability insurance policy,” the bill text reads.

[…]

“For too long, gun victims and society at large have borne the brunt of the costs of gun violence,” Maloney said as she introduced the legislation. “My bill would change that by shifting some of that cost back onto those who own the weapons.”

Let me be the first to point out that Maloney is apparently a babbling idiot (because I know the commentors will point it out otherwise).

Republicans Called Out for Not Acting Like Republicans

Rand Paul

Some Republican House members are apparently upset with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) over ads being run in their districts. According to Politico, the ads are sponsored by the National Association for Gun Rights, which Paul has done fundraising pitches for in the past, and targeting members who are viewed as shaky on gun control measures:

Sen. Rand Paul, the tea party favorite and possible 2016 presidential candidate, is raising money for a conservative gun rights group that’s targeting fellow Republicans, including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

And when one congressman complained, the message from Paul’s camp was: too bad.
[…]
The group has blitzed the districts of Virginia Republicans Cantor and Rep. Scott Rigell with $50,000 worth of TV and radio ads accusing them of helping President Barack Obama pass gun control legislation.

Paul’s email pitches for the group don’t mention Cantor or Rigell by name, but his activity for an organization that attacks fellow Republicans shows the potential 2016 presidential contender isn’t afraid to pick a fight inside the party.

We need more people willing to call out Republicans who could go soft on big issues. If they don’t like the heat, rather than complaining to Paul, they should make it clear that they aren’t going to cast a vote that violates Second Amendment rights.

It’s pretty simple how that works.

Universal Background Checks May Not Survive in the Senate

guns

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) recently insisted that universal background checks would be part of any new gun control package that made its way of the Senate. However, push back from key senators may force Democrats to change their strategy:

Senators from both parties signaled Sunday that universal background checks could be the next gun measure to get shoved toward the legislative scrap heap or significantly watered down.

Sen. Charles E. Schumer, whose bill to expand background checks to cover virtually all gun transactions, including private sales, has cleared the Judiciary Committee, said he is nevertheless hunting for a compromise on the issue.
[…]
Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona called universal checks “a bridge too far for most of us.”

“Well, the paperwork requirements alone would be significant, and even if there are exemptions for a father passing on a gun to his son or daughter, you’d still have issues with people in a private setting transferring or loaning a gun for somebody,” Mr. Flake said later on the program.

This controversial provision would expand background checks from gun dealers with a Federal Firearms License (FFL) to private gun sellers, which is an unprecendented move. Background checks are supposed to help prevent criminals or the mentally ill from obtaining firearms.

Rand Paul Slams Hollywood Hypocrisy on Guns

Rand Paul

There is substantial hypocrisy coming from Hollywood and other prominent gun control advocates, according to Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). During an appearance on Fox News last Thursday night, Paul knocked those who are pushing for the new laws:

“I don’t begrudge any famous person like Mayor Bloomberg, or the president or the president’s family for having protection — I think they all should. There’s enough crazy people out there that would attack on the right or the left. But I think when you are being protected by people who have weapons by responsible people, I can’t see why you would be opposed to that for other people,” Paul, a Kentucky Republican, said Thursday on Fox News’s “Hannity” to guest-host Eric Bolling.

He continued: “Many rich Hollywood celebrities have armed guards with them at all times and many regular people who live in a poor neighborhood, who have a business in a poor neighborhood and a neighborhood that may have higher crime — those people have to suffer the vicissitudes of violent crime without protection sometimes because of gun control laws. So, yes, I think there is a certain amount of hypocrisy.”

Rubio, Inhofe Join Pledge to Filibuster Gun Control Measures

Marco Rubio

When Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) tries to bring President Barack Obama’s gun control legislation to the Senate floor next month, he’ll face opposition from a growing number of Republicans who believe the measures are a vehicle to infringe on the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans.

Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Rand Paul (R-KY) have pledged to filibuster a procedural move by Reid to bring the gun control legislation up for debate. Though the White House has slammed the conservative senators, Paul said yesterday that they’re forging ahead with the filibuster — and it looks they’re going to get some help from Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Jim Inhofe (R-OK):

Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and James Inhofe, R-Okla., joined three other Republican senators threatening to filibuster any new restrictions on guns Thursday.

The two senators added their signatures to a letter previously signed by Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Ted Cruz, R-Texas, vowing to protect the Second Amendment.
[…]
In a statement released Thursday, Rubio said he will oppose any legislation that could be used as a vehicle to impose new restrictions on “responsible, law-abiding gun owners.”

This Week in “Gun Disgust”: Social Services Visits New Jersey Man’s House Because of a Facebook Picture of His Son Holding a Gun

Written by Trevor Burrus, research fellow at the Cato Institute’s Center for Constitutional Studies. Posted with permission from Cato @ Liberty.

A picture of Shawn Moore’s 11-year-old clad in camouflage and holding a scary-looking gun prompted New Jersey’s Department of Children and Families to visit his house for an “inspection,” according to Moore. As reported by the Associated Press:

The elder Moore was at a friend’s house when his wife called, saying state child welfare investigators, along with four local police officers, were at the house, asking to inspect the family’s guns.

Moore said he called his lawyer Evan Nappen, who specializes in Second Amendment cases, and had him on speaker phone as he arrived at his house in Carneys Point, just across the Delaware River from Wilmington, Del.

“They said they wanted to see into my safe and see if my guns were registered,” Moore said. “I said no; in New Jersey, your guns don’t have to be registered with the state; it’s voluntary. I knew once I opened that safe, there was no going back.”

The Department of Children and Families has not confirmed that the Facebook picture was the reason for the surprise “inspection,” but a spokeswoman did comment that it is “important to note the way an investigation begins is through the child abuse hotline. Someone has to call to let us know there is a concern.”

Cruz Explains Tough Questioning of Feinstein on the Bill of Rights

Ted Cruz

On Monday, Sean Hannity talked with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) about his exchange last week with Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), during which he asked the fierce gun control advocate if she would support banning certain books that maybe deemed dangerous or contain explicit messages. Feinstein didn’t react well to the line of question, angrily stating that she’d served on the Senate Judiciary Committee for 20 years and didn’t need a lecture.

In a calm manner, Cruz explained that he appreciated her “sincerity and passion,” but noted that she didn’t answer the question. Feinstein fired back, “The answer is obvious – no.”

Cruz, who served as a clerk for then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist, told Hannity that more of his colleagues should question what Congress does. “For a long time, a whole bunch of Democrats and, unfortunately, even some Republicans have been passing laws in this body without even asking where the basis is in the Constitution,” said Cruz. “And I think the Constitution should be the starting point for everything Congress does.”

Hannity asked Cruz about the First Amendment analogy he used with Feinstein. Cruz explained that his question was based in the text of the Constitution that refers to the “right of the people.”

“The reason is if you look at the text of the Constitution — and I always think the text of the Constitution should be the starting point — the Second Amendment provides the ‘right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed,’” noted Cruz. “And the point I made in my question is that language — the ‘right of the people’ — is a term of art that the framers of the Constitution used in other places in the Constitution.”

Win for Gun Rights in Washington State

Washington State Capitol

Gun control advocates have been pushing hard for new background check regulations.  Not only are they doing it at the national level, but also at the state level.  Unfortunately for them, they just got their butt handed to him in Washington state.

A contentious proposal to expand background checks on Washington state gun sales failed Tuesday in the state House, where supporters said they were just a handful of votes short.

In a final effort to pick up a few extra votes, Rep. Jamie Pedersen, D-Seattle, had proposed a referendum clause that would have allowed the public to vote on the measure. He initially believed that would draw enough support to corral the 50 votes needed to pass the bill but conceded Tuesday night that others had dropped their backing because of that shift.

“It was too big of a stretch for this year,” Pedersen said.

Pedersen said he was disappointed by the result, and several Democrats departing for the night were emotional about the collapse of a bill they’d spent two days intensely working to finalize. The week had included lobbying from former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona Democrat who was wounded in a January 2011 mass shooting, and Gov. Jay Inslee.

The bill in question would have required background checks on the private sales of weapons, a provision which is often termed the “gun show loophole”, but doesn’t have any bearing on gun shows.

Gun rights advocates such as myself are concerned that doing this would lead to gun registrations…in part because it would actually be a kind of registration (there is a paper trail for where each and every gun ends up).

Illinois Democrat Seeks to Disarm the Poorest People

Luis Gutierrez

There’s long been a prejudice against small, inexpensive handguns often called “Saturday Night Specials.”  This cheap guns aren’t generally bought by members of the NRA or other gun rights groups either, so they make wonderful targets of opportunity.

That’s just what an Illinois Democrat seems to be thinking with a bill he apparently intends to introduce.  From The Hill:

Although Washington’s gun-control debate has focused largely on more imposing weapons, like military-style assault rifles, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) is going after the handguns that are used much more frequently by violent criminals, particularly in urban settings like his hometown, where shootings are a daily plague.

“I am concerned about the assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. But I am also concerned by the ‘slow-moving massacre’ that is occurring every day with handguns,” Gutierrez, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, said Monday in Chicago while announcing his bill.
[…]
Gutierrez is quick to note that lower-profile shootings claim many more lives each year than the mass killings that generate broad media attention and that handguns — not assault rifles — are most often used in those murders. In 2011, for instance, 97 percent of Chicago’s 362 gun murders involved handguns. Not one of them spurred a congressional hearing.

For what it’s worth, Gutierrez is right about how a handgun is far more likely to be used in a murder than an assault weapon.  However, he’s missing out on a lot of important information about guns used in crimes, and about who purchases these so-called “Saturday Night Specials.”

A Few Personal Observations From a Contentious Town Hall Meeting

assault weapons

This past Saturday, I decided to meet up with Colorado Libertarian Party members to take part in a town hall meeting at the Smoky Hill Library in Centennial, Colorado. Several members of the state legislature hosted the event: Sen. Nancy Todd (D-Sen. Dist. 28), John Buckner (D-House Dist. 40), and Su Ryden (D-House Dist. 36). Senate Majority Leader, Morgan Carroll (D-Dist.29) was a no show.

When I received the invitation, in my inbox, there were 11 others who RSVP’d to attend the event. I really had no idea if we would be the only individuals in attendance who would challenge these legislators or if we would be in good company. All I knew was all of these legislators would be Democrats in favor of most, if not all, of the gun control measures (at least in principle) being considered at the state capitol. I fully expected that we would be crashing their party.

As it turned out, the Colorado Libertarians who responded to the Meetup invitation were not the only party crashers (I’m not entirely clear on who was part of ‘our group’ and who wasn’t). Before the meeting, several of  us were outside with our pro-gun rights signs. Rep. Ryden and Sen. Todd were kind enough to talk with us briefly before the meeting started.

Just before the meeting started, we were advised to write down our questions on the 3X5 cards the meeting organizers provided to us rather than take random questions from the citizens. As the meeting progressed with a small number of the questions being read, many in attendance were not too pleased with this “I thought this was supposed to be a town hall meeting,” one person complained. About halfway into the meeting after several unsatisfactory answers from the legislators concerning the right to bear arms, one elderly gentleman stormed out.


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