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Gun Politics


Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 08 Jul 2014 03:15 am

The bill is mostly designed to ‘assist’ Senate Democrats up for reelection in ‘red states.’ From The Hill:

The Senate voted to move forward on Monday with legislation aimed at preserving federal lands for hunting and fishing, despite objections from Democrats who wanted the measure to include gun control language.

Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said they voted against cloture on the motion to proceed because they don’t think the Senate should be considering a gun bill that doesn’t include reforms such as background checks on all gun sales.

“I cannot vote for a measure that makes owning, possessing or using guns more readily or easily usable when we have failed to act and we have failed to act on common sense, sensible measures that would stop gun violence,” Blumenthal said ahead of the vote. “First things first, let’s reduce gun violence.”

The vote to move it forward was 82-12 in favor — meaning that a whole lot of Democrats were more interested in the intent of the bill (helping red state Dems) than adding on gun control amendments. Those could still come, but I doubt it since then the House would block the bill. BTW, the bill was introduced by a N.C. Democrat, Kay Hagan.

Update 7/10: Now the Dems and Reps are battling each other over tacking on amendments:

Senators of both parties are readying gun-related amendments and are poised to introduce them this week. Republicans want to overturn the ban on large-capacity magazines and assault weapons in the District of Columbia; expand the right to purchase or transport firearms and ammunition across state lines; limit when a military veteran can be denied a firearm due to mental illness; and allow gun owners to carry weapons into post offices or other federal sites. Democrats said they are working on proposals to limit the sale of certain weapons and ammunition; expand the national background-check system; and stiffen penalties for gun straw purchasers.

But then there’s this report:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada blocked a parade of campaign-season votes on gun rights Wednesday that could have been a political thorn for Democrats seeking to retain control of the chamber in this fall’s elections.

The Nevada Democrat used Senate procedures to prevent votes on any amendments to a bipartisan measure expanding hunters’ access to public lands and renewing land conservation programs.

Confused? So am I…

Update 7/11: The bill is dead:

The Senate killed a bipartisan bill Thursday designed to boost hunting and fishing protections — a victim of a long-running war over amendments that came in the shadow of gun politics.

The sportsmen’s bill — a political boon for its chief Democratic sponsor, North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan — died in a 41-56 procedural vote Thursday. The legislation needed 60 votes to advance.

Gun Politics and 2016Jeff Soyer on 02 Jul 2014 08:54 pm

From Fox News:

Gov. Chris Christie has vetoed a gun control bill that would have banned ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds.

[ . . . ]

Christie said in his veto message that limiting the number of bullets that guns can hold will not put an end to mass shootings. He is calling for reforms to mental illness treatment instead.

Well, it’s good news for N.J. gun owners and God knows they could use some. As I understand it, the vetoed legislation didn’t offer a grandfather clause in it.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 27 Jun 2014 02:40 am

From MSNBC:

163 House Democrats – over 80% of the entire caucus – signed onto an open letter Thursday addressed to Republican House Speaker John Boehner demanding that he allow “a vote on substantive legislation to address gun violence.” The timing of the letter suggests that Democrats are prepared to make gun control in an issue in the 2014 midterm elections, despite evenly divided public opinion and staunch opposition from the powerful National Rifle Association (NRA).

Yeah, well, that’s all they’ve got, isn’t it? Gun control, global warming, legalize illegal immigrants … That’s their whole agenda since they’ve failed at everything else. Unfortunately for them, the vast majority of Americans don’t care about these issues.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 23 Jun 2014 02:08 am

From the Washington Times:

Everybody loves Gabby Giffords — just not necessarily on the campaign trail.

When the gun control advocacy group led by the former congresswoman from Arizona threw its support behind several endangered Senate Democrats in Western and Southern states, the candidates carefully moved to distance themselves from the affable Ms. Giffords and boasted about their strident defense of Second Amendment rights.

The message was clear: Thanks, but no thanks.

More at the link.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 16 Jun 2014 08:12 am

A pretty good article about the debate over gun control. The author notes that there is one proven way to get illegal guns off the street, but liberals hate it:

But there is one jurisdiction that has led a largely successful campaign to become what liberals want — a largely gun-free polity — but it has done so through means that liberals loudly revile. I am talking, of course, of New York City under Mayor Bloomberg and of the practice known as stop-and-frisk.

Any policy dedicated to getting rid of illegal guns will end up with police targeting areas where crime is more common. And the sad truth in America is that such areas are largely poor and populated by minorities. If you want to get rid of illegal guns in a neighborhood, given that a gun is a very small and easy-to-conceal item, there are no two ways to go about it effectively: you have to search very large amounts of people, in a systematic, sustained way. As John Podhoretz has argued, it is the very comprehensiveness of stop-and-frisk that makes it effective: it’s once you know that your likelihood of being searched is very high that you don’t dare venture out with an illegal gun. And given the social reality of the United States, most of the people targeted will be young minorities. That this is deplorable doesn’t make it any less real.

This state of affairs may point to some hypocrisy on the part of some conservatives, some of whom might perhaps like stop-and-frisk and a gun in every middle-class home. But it also leaves liberals in a moral bind. For liberals, stop-and-frisk clearly isn’t about empirical costs and benefits; the liberal discourse on stop-and-frisk is that it is comprehensively wrong because it fails to protect a civil right that they particularly care about, rightly, namely the Fourth Amendment, and the fact that stop-and-frisk disproportionately targets minorities is the terrible icing on the awful cake.

Much more at the link and well worth a read.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 15 Jun 2014 02:20 am

From KUSA TV:

The governor’s mea culpa came Friday when he spoke before an assembled group of sheriffs from around Colorado.

A Hickenlooper spokesman confirms that the Governor apologized to the sheriffs for not meeting with them prior to the passage of gun control bills they opposed. Hickenlooper also said his administration didn’t do a good job anticipating pushback on gun control. According to his spokesman, Hickenlooper pledged better communication in the future.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 11 Jun 2014 02:51 am

From taxpayer funded NPR:

Just hours after a another school shooting, President Obama was asked what he was going to do about these kinds of incidents.

“The country has to do some soul searching about this,” Obama said. “This is becoming the norm and we take it for granted in ways that as a parent are terrifying to me.”

Obama went on for about seven minutes. He was talking , the founder of the microblogging site Tumblr. He said the core of the issue is not mental health, but ready access to guns and large caches of ammunition.

What a lying, pandering fool! Of course it’s about mental health. There are a hundred-million gun owners in this country that DIDN’T go on a shooting rampage yesterday and all of them had ready access to their guns. And, what the hell is the definition of “large caches of ammunition?” A box of fifty?

Furthermore, the real slaughter — to put it in a hyperbolic way — is occurring in the streets by gang members — a majority of them Black and Hispanic. Shouldn’t the real “soul searching” be focused on THAT, and the root causes of THAT? Or, would that be racist?

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 29 May 2014 10:40 pm

Not that I believe that more gun control laws are needed, but this doesn’t worry me:

In a small sign of bipartisanship in the wake of the Isla Vista, California shooting rampage that killed six people last week, moderate Republicans joined House Democrats Thursday night in passing an amendment to boost funding for the criminal background check system.

[ . . . ]

If signed into law, the amendment would increase funding for the criminal background check system by $19.5 million – raising the total funding level for the program to $78 million – to help ensure states have the necessary resources to submit additional records of prohibited firearm purchasers to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

I’m guessing that the Democrat-controlled Senate will try to beef this amendment up to something that does worry me.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 08 May 2014 08:33 pm

Well, can be put back up:

An Arizona appeals court says Phoenix violated a gun-rights activist’s constitutional protections when it removed his bus-stop ads saying “guns save lives.'’

The three-judge panel said in its ruling Thursday that the city unconstitutionally applied its transit advertising standards.

The court’s opinion overturns a Maricopa County Superior Court ruling siding with Phoenix.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 07 May 2014 12:09 am

She — who years ago favored national gun registration — continues her anti-gun rhetoric:

Speaking at the National Council for Behavioral Health conference in Oxon Hill, Md., the former secretary of state didn’t dispute Americans’ right to own guns. But she said access to guns in the U.S. had grown “way out of balance.”

”We’ve got to rein in what has become an almost article of faith that anybody can have a gun anywhere, anytime,” she said. “And I don’t believe that is in the best interest of the vast majority of people.”

Citing a number of shootings that arose from minor arguments over loud music or texting, she drew a comparison: “That’s what happens in the countries I’ve visited where there is no rule of law and no self-control.” She added: “That is something that we cannot just let go without paying attention.”

Shootings over loud music or texting in a theater are incredibly rare. Shootings in the streets by gang members are common and are proof that the “rule of law” has failed in eliminating them — hence the need for law abiding people to CCW.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 02 May 2014 03:29 am

He says that if the pro-gun side writes the legislation, it will be in our favor. Otherwise, we’re bound to lose in the end:

“If we write a background check bill we could write it in a way that protects our rights,” Gottlieb explained. “If we let the other side do it it’s not going to protect our rights and it’ll be a disaster because Bloomberg wants to write it in a way that’s more than a disaster.”

“So, the question is do we lead or do we follow?” he asked.

“I think we need to lead, something we haven’t done because now we’re seeing background check measures on ballots in various states that are extremely draconian that really do attack our rights and we have a problem because the public perception is basically ‘Hey, what’s wrong with a background check?’”

More, and video at the link.

My problem is that the anti-gun side doesn’t compromise. They define what is “sensible” and “reasonable.” And, once the legislation is written, all sorts of bans or restrictions will be added as amendments. Read the whole thing and decide for yourself.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 26 Apr 2014 04:16 am

Bluegrass Bruce is wondering why Franklin Graham was invited?

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 23 Apr 2014 05:36 am

Former President Bill Clinton will be headlining a fundraiser for Gabby Giffords — in NY City, of course. From Breitbart:

Now Clinton is taking part in an event for Giffords’s gun control group, which supports the “expanded background checks that failed in the Senate last year.”

Clinton supports greater gun control but has also warned Democrats that supporting gun control could “[antagonize] people entrenched in the gun culture.”

And, I’m feeling antagonized.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 16 Apr 2014 02:45 am

From Reuters:

Initiative 594 would require all firearm sales, including those at gun shows and conducted online, to be predicated on a background check of the buyer. Initiative 591, however, would disallow background checks for gun purchases unless explicitly required by the federal government.

[ . . . ]

The results on the Washington state gun measures from the Elway Poll, which is independent of the two campaigns, shows Initiative 594 enjoying 72 percent support, while the other measure has 55 percent in favor. The poll’s margin of error is 4.5 percentage points, and 504 registered voters participated.

Since the second initiative essentially leaves things as they are, there must be a lot of confused people in the Evergreen State. Might be because of legalized pot… Or, the Elway Poll used a scale of 127%.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 31 Mar 2014 05:28 am

One pro-gunner thinks so:

The head of New York’s largest firearms organization is skipping a planned Tuesday Capitol protest of the state’s tougher gun control laws enacted last year, saying he fears the rhetoric at such gatherings is becoming more “contentious and threatening.”

Thomas King, a national NRA board member and president of the state Rifle & Pistol Association, argues that the angry and inflammatory rhetoric only hurts the cause of gun lovers.

[ . . . ]

You won’t change people’s minds, he wrote, by “screaming obscenities at Cuomo and certainly at large rallies where people stand on stage, pound their chest and tell the attendees to prepare for war.

“That frightens the very people we want to attract to our side.”

King said his NRA-affiliated group will not work with organizations “that we feel will be detrimental to our efforts to restore 2nd Amendment freedoms to New York State.”

More, including what he feels is the better strategy, at the link. Keep in mind that the article is in the rabidly anti-gun NY Daily News.

Nanny State and Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 04 Mar 2014 11:59 am

I’m starting to think that there is no hope for the pansy-state nation that “progressives” have foisted upon us. From KATU Ohio:

A central Ohio principal says she suspended a 10-year-old boy from school for three days for pretending his finger was a gun and pointing it at another student’s head.

The boy’s father says it’s the adults who are acting childish for suspending the boy from Devonshire Alternative Elementary School in Columbus last week.

Perhaps they need a Pop Tart bill in Ohio.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 01 Mar 2014 02:40 am

From the Washington Times:

Late Friday, Chris Cox, the executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action released a letter he sent to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to notify them that his organization “strongly opposes” confirmation of Dr. Vivek Murthy.

A spokesman for the NRA told me that the five-million member organization will score the Senate vote, meaning that it counts toward a member’s rating in campaigns.

And, considering that Democrats are on shaky ground in the coming 2014 elections . . . Although Republicans seem determined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 09 Feb 2014 12:07 pm

I want to buy this guy a beer, and a box of ammo:




Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 05 Feb 2014 06:21 am

Most of an article about how one Virginia county made it difficult for Beretta to expand an existing distribution center has nothing to do with new VA Governor Terry McAuliffe. However, a couple of paragraphs caught my eye. From Fredericksburg.com:

Beretta announced last week that it will open a manufacturing plant in Gallatin, Tenn., that will create 300 new jobs. The business said it refused to consider expanding in Maryland, where its U.S. headquarters is located, in light of stricter gun laws that the state passed last year.

Virginia had been one of seven states under consideration for the new plant. Reh said last year that the company had looked at sites in Warrenton and Caroline County.

But he said in an email this week that the election of Terry McAuliffe as governor “did not help any Virginia site in our evaluation.” He accused McAuliffe of running an “anti-gun campaign” in Northern Virginia.

Another Democrat killing jobs, even before he took office.

Gun PoliticsJeff Soyer on 13 Jan 2014 06:23 pm

Talk about sending out invitations to the hostile press to chastise you. One Oregon county GOP group is doing just that:

The Multnomah County Republican Party announced Monday plans to raffle off an AR-15 assault-style rifle to celebrate slain American icons Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr.

The press release from the county party read:

Multnomah Country Republicans recognize the incredible time of year we are in. In successive months to start the year, we celebrate the legacy of two great Republicans who demonstrated leadership and courage that all of us still lean on today: Martin Luther King, Jr. and Abraham Lincoln. In celebrating these two men, and the denial of the rights they fought so hard against, the Multnomah County Republican Party announces that we have started our third raffle for an AR-15 rifle (or handgun of the winner’s choice). . .

Do they not get the irony that a whole lot of others will? Do they not understand that while their intentions might be good, the way they are going about it is guaranteed to draw criticism from the press, from Democrats, from anti-gun groups, from just about any thinking person with the briefest knowledge of history? Lincoln and King were assassinated by guns. Common sense would dictate that you not “honor” their memories by raffling off a gun. Aside from the unpleasant irony, it’s what we in the marketing world call, “bad optics.”

*Sigh* For many-a-year now the Republicans have proven expert at snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

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