House Approves ‘Violence Against Women’ Bill that Ends Gun Rights for Certain Misdemeanor Offenses

Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, the sole GOP co-sponsor of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2019. (Photo: Facebook)

The House of Representatives on Thursday passed legislation that would end gun rights for certain misdemeanor offenses.

Under H.R. 1585, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2019 (VAWA), those convicted of misdemeanor offenses for stalking would lose their Second Amendment rights. Current federal law only denies gun rights for stalkers with a felony conviction.

VAWA would also ban guns for “dating partners” convicted of or under a restraining order for domestic abuse. Current federal law generally only denies gun possession for spouses, family members or intimate partners convicted of domestic abuse. The term “dating partners” broadens the reach of the statute to include non-married couples who don’t live together nor share a child.

Additionally, VAWA contains a provision to alert local authorities when convicted domestic abusers attempt to purchase a firearm from an FFL and are denied during the background check process. Following a NICS check denial, the FBI is notified but often times state or local law enforcement does not receive word about the blocked transfer.

The sole Republican co-sponsor of the bill Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) suggested that supporting VAWA is common sense regardless of which side of the aisle one sits on.

“I understand for some of my colleagues that may be controversial. For me, it’s not,” explained Fitzpatrick, a former FBI agent to NPR. “I tell my colleagues all the time, I think the biggest threat to the Second Amendment is when you allow all of these gun crimes to occur unaddressed, because that erodes people’s confidence and trust in people that are legitimately trying to protect themselves and their families and their homes.”

SEE ALSO: New Zealand Gangs: ‘No,’ We Won’t Get Rid of Our Guns

The House passed VAWA by a vote of 263 to 158, mostly along party lines. Thirty-three Republicans supported the bill and only one Democrat opposed it. Along with the new gun provisions, VAWA sets aside funding to the tune of $1 billion per year for the next five years for domestic violence prevention and other programs to protect women.

National Rifle Association spokeswoman Jennifer Baker released a statement explaining why the nation’s gun lobby despite embracing the spirit of VAWA, opposes the updates to the bill.

“The NRA opposes domestic violence and all violent crime, and spends millions of dollars teaching countless Americans how not to be a victim and how to safely use firearms for self-defense. The gun control lobby and anti-gun politicians are intentionally politicizing the Violence Against Women Act as a smokescreen to push their gun control agenda. It’s appalling that the gun control lobby and anti-gun politicians are trivializing the serious issue of domestic violence,” she told Fortune.

At issue is the lowered standard by which one would lose their right to keep and bear arms for the rest of their life. Meanwhile, Everytown for Guns Safety, the anti-gun organization funded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, hailed it as a defeat for the NRA.

“Back in the day, the NRA might have succeeded in pushing lawmakers to put gun lobby priorities ahead of the safety of American women — but those days are ending,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety in a statement obtained by GunsAmerica. “Thanks to Representatives Bass and Fitzpatrick for leading this bipartisan push to make it harder for abusers to get armed, and easier for law enforcement to protect victims.”

No one wants domestic abusers or violent stalkers to get their hands on guns — or any weapons for that matter. The question, of course, is will another set of laws really prevent someone already crazy enough to kill their ex-wife or girlfriend from going through with the act.

Maybe VAWA will work to stop some violent men from using a firearm to do the deed. Maybe instead these men will use a baseball bat or a knife or a farm implement to brutally slay their dating partner. What we need to ask ourselves in these cases is have we really done anything to stop violence against women?

Because if that is the true goal, to stop violence against women, then we need to recognize that more laws are the least effective means of getting the job done. By contrast, empowering women to take an active role in the defense of themselves and their families will go a long way to solving the problem. After all, a dead domestic abuser will never abuse again.

A Senate version of VAWA will likely be considered in the near future.  We’ll keep you posted.

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 17 comments… add one }
  • Beachhawk April 6, 2019, 6:39 pm

    Nancy Pelosi’s radical left acolytes might pass this bill in the House, but it will never see the light of day in the Senate. While the Democrats don’t give a damn about due process, Brian Fitzpatrick should re-read the appropriate sections of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights before making a fool of himself and getting kicked out of the GOP.

    • The Old Guide April 9, 2019, 9:05 am

      Brian does not need to worry about getting kicked out of the GOP> The “big tent” party has a tent that only leans to the left.

  • Kane April 6, 2019, 10:20 am

    Would Joe Biden get to keep his shotgun under HR 1585?

  • Altoids April 5, 2019, 11:20 am

    These communists who control the House are just finding any excuse they can to keep tightening the screws.

    In the future, looks for bans on firearms ownership for any individual who has ever been convicted of or pleaded “no contest” to a traffic violation.

  • Jason Coffey April 5, 2019, 11:07 am

    Anyway these power hungry rats can phrase these bills to “protect women” and pass all kinds of un Constitutional crap thru! And the feckless GOP are just as likely to go rite with em lately.

  • Bobs your uncle April 5, 2019, 10:50 am

    How does this apply to the estimated 25 million undocumented aliens currently in our country illegally? How did they get firearms in the first place? Does this apply to sanctuary cities? sounds like more P.T.Barnum ” another ones born every minute ” HEY!!! Government, stop helping us!

  • JOHN MCNAMARA April 5, 2019, 9:35 am

    Do not forget one important aspect:

    The Lautenberg Amendment concerning domestic violence is RETROACTIVE! Changing this law could cost more gun owners their rights RETROACTIVELY.

    Imagine: We passed a law that DUI convictions would cost you the right to own or drive a car and, because this law is retroactive, if you were EVER convicted of a DUI in the past, you also can no longer own or drive a car.

    WHERE DID OUR CONSTITUTION GO???? Beware!

    • Winston April 5, 2019, 12:27 pm

      SECTION 10. Clause 1. No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

      We already exist in a country of lawlessness on many levels.

  • Godfrey Washington April 5, 2019, 9:12 am

    My only observation is that if the US Government needed to send people to go fight in a war, convictions or not, able bodies are getting sent.

    Are we to expect that these people would not be issued weapons?

    • JOHN MCNAMARA April 5, 2019, 9:37 am

      The Lautenberg Amendment did take away men from using weapons in the military, as could this change. A deputy friend of mine was relieved of his firearm and assigned to desk duty because of the Lautenberg Amendment.

    • Winston April 5, 2019, 12:34 pm

      The US will never fight another declared war, because that means fighting an industrialized entity such as Russia or China who can strike the US mainland in less than 20 minutes. Those man-boys and vituperative feminists in DC will not be able to keep their life-long gravy train careers going if they did that.

  • Terry Constance April 5, 2019, 8:45 am

    Fake legielation by another sexist.

  • Alej April 5, 2019, 8:33 am

    Sick to God of this “women” crap. There is no word comparable to “8itch” directed at men. Sometimes those 8itches need their attention gotten.

    • Charles Moore April 5, 2019, 10:31 am

      i thought women were supposed to be “equal” now (many like to think that they are BETTER in most every way!). If so, then WHY do we always see all of these protections and extra rights being constantly trotted out???

  • Jay April 5, 2019, 7:40 am

    So a crazed woman attacks a man and now he can’t defend himself or he will lose his rights to posses firearms! So a woman who identifies herself as a man attacks a man and he loses his rights! The scenario could go on and on, Ive seen X’s claim all sorts of things against the man just for pull in court and this will most certainly add to the woman’s ammunition to get back at the man. If they are so concerned with violence against a woman, there would be far, far better ways to help, it’s called banning Muslims who take pride in the violent mistreatment of women!

  • Dr Motown April 5, 2019, 6:39 am

    So, a convicted felon will get his voting rights back, but someone who\’s crazed ex-spouse made unfounded allegations against him, resulting in a misdemeanor plea, loses his rights forever??? Happens a lot folks in this \”me too\” environment….

  • Rich April 5, 2019, 4:35 am

    What makes me sick is the focus on “violence against women”. Women are just as capable of being evil and abusive in a relationship as men are, but it seems men are the one who get focused on as being brutish and violent towards the “fair sex”. Thank you, feminazis – may you all rot in Hell.

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