As predicted, Democrats hit the ground running when Congress came back into session and the House Judiciary quickly acted on three new gun control measures, with votes along party lines that moved a “red flag” bill, a ban on original capacity magazines and a third measure to prohibit people convicted of misdemeanor hate crimes to lose their gun rights.
But a leading gun rights organization hit back Wednesday, accusing Democrats of missing the mark, explaining in blunt terms, “They just don’t get it.”
Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms reminded Democrats in a prepared statement, “So far all Democrats have accomplished with their gun prohibition agenda is increase gun sales by 15 percent over the last month. This happens every time they introduce or pass new restrictions.”
He was alluding to published reports that gun sales have ticked upwards, and there have been a lot more background checks initiated with the National Instant Criminal Background Check System” (NICS) over the past month. While not all of those checks are related to firearms transactions, a lot of them were.
It follows a pattern that historically has occurred every time Congress starts talking about new gun control measures. Those restrictive bills are typically the work of anti-gun Democrats.
But Gottlieb warned Democrats that this could backfire big time by bringing gun owners to the polls in 2020.
“Their attack on Second Amendment rights is really going to increase gun owner voter turnout in the 2020 elections,” Gottlieb predicted. “Remember the elections in 1994, 2000 and 2016. Those elections should serve as reminders that American gun owners are tired of being treated like second-class citizens.
“The more extreme anti-gunners get with their bans and restrictions, the more they telegraph that they have no respect for our Constitutional Second Amendment rights,” he stated.
According to Reuters and other news agencies, Democrats are moving the bills “to put pressure on Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell to allow a vote on gun-related bills including universal background check legislation that passed the House in February.”
But there are concerns about the so-called “red flag” laws already in place and the ones that House Democrats hope will be adopted by the states, with incentives from the federal government. The primary concern is due process, and the fact that some of the existing laws allow for a wide range of people to file a complaint with the courts and have someone’s firearms seized before they have an opportunity to refute allegations.
“Proponents of these measures seem far more interested in confiscating someone’s firearms than they are in getting help for these individuals,” Gottlieb said. “Without due process, you’re essentially considered guilty until you prove yourself innocent, and in the meantime, you’re stripped of an important constitutional right. It doesn’t pass the smell test, and the odor could linger up to the November 2020 election.”
Fox News is reporting that Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) “is confident an agreement can be reached on gun reform legislation.” But even in that report, gun rights activists have a problem with semantics, because this is not “reform” at all, but gun control.
Legislation authored by Toomey and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.VA) will expand background checks, Fox is reporting, and it may get support from the White House. Earlier, Manchin told Fox that transfers of firearms between family members would be protected .
However, many in the Second Amendment community maintain they are being penalized for crimes they didn’t commit, specifically the mass shootings that occurred over the summer in Texas, California and Ohio.
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