House Democrats are committed — committed to voting on legislation that would further restrict the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans.
On Wednesday, nearly three months after their staged sit-in on the House floor that lasted 25 hours, various Democrats once again tried to bully the lower House into taking up a vote on gun control
“Time and time again we ask for compassion, time and time again we ask for action, time and time again we ask for leadership. Our people are sick and tired of a do nothing congress,” said Rep. John Lewis (D-Georgia). “These bills should be passed. Bring them to the floor, let us have a vote.”
The legislation in question are a no-fly, no-buy bill and a universal background check bill. While on the surface they sound like “common sense” measures to reduce gun violence, the reality is that they are anything but.
The no-fly, no-buy bill which prevents those on government watch lists from purchasing guns has all sorts of issues as it relates to checks and balances and due process. First off, the watch lists lack transparency. No one but the government knows who is on them. No one but the government knows how a citizen ends up on one. Second, it’s unconstitutional to deprive a citizen of his or her right to keep and bear arms without due process. When the government prevents one from purchasing a firearm on the mere suspicion he or she is an enemy of the state, the government is violating one’s Fifth Amendment rights.
Likewise, the universal background check bill House Dems are proposing has major problems, the least of which is that it would create a system whereby one would be compelled to pay a background check fee for every firearm transfer. For instance, your friend is going hunting and he wants to borrow your shotgun. With a universal background check law on the books, you and him would have to go to an FFL, pay the fee to the gun shop owner to run the background check on your buddy before you could lawfully lend him the firearm. Obviously, this is not only a pain in the butt to do, but it can be costly. It’s a way to further chill Second Amendment rights. The goal is to make gun ownership more costly than it already is. In a nutshell, a universal background check bill is tantamount to taxing the Second Amendment.
The other point to be made about both bills is that there is no evidence to suggest that either bill would be effective at reducing violence. Nevertheless, the House Democrats are hellbent on enacting these bills into law.
“We’re not going away,” said Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-California). “We’re not going to stop until we enact gun violence prevention laws. We’re not going to stop until we get the job done.”
“We have a little time to save lives,” continued Pelosi. “What more important thing does any of us have to do than to stay here and pass a law to save lives? Somebody said to you, you could save 90 lives by passing a bill today, wouldn’t you do that? Or why wouldn’t you do that? Why wouldn’t you do that?”
Thus far, Republicans have shown little interest in taking up the issue. In fact, just the opposite. There were rumblings that GOP lawmakers would look into ways to punish Democrats for their sit-in back in June just before the Legislature’s summer recess.
On that note, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) said in an interview with reporters that leadership would “see when we do something about it” but did not delve into specifics about what punishment he would mete out.
“Our goal here and our job is to protect this institution. Protect this institution so that democracy can work, so the house can get its job done,” Ryan said.