Anyone ‘Investigated’ for Terrorism Would Be Banned from Owning Firearms Under Sen. Rubio’s Bill

Sen. Rubio tried to pass a similar bill in 2016. (Photo: Gage Skidmore)

Sen. Marco Rubio has reintroduced a bill that would suspend the Second Amendment rights of anyone who has been investigated for terrorism in the previous ten years.

Like so-called “red flag” laws, the legislation does not require that a person be convicted of a crime. Instead, it allows the FBI to petition a court to suspend a person’s gun rights for an indefinite amount of time if that person has been “the subject of a terrorism investigation by any Federal department or agency.”

Sen. Rubio first introduced this legislation in 2016 following a terrorist attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida that left 49 people dead. It failed to pass the Republican-controlled Congress at the time, but Rubio has reintroduced the bill in hopes of passing it this term.

“After the terrorist attack at Pulse nightclub, I made a promise to improve our laws to make it more difficult for evil people to get ahold of guns,” Rubio said in a statement.“This bill is a common-sense measure that would help ensure criminals, terrorists, and others seeking to take innocent lives are not able to acquire firearms, while also protecting the due process and Second Amendment rights of innocent, law-abiding Americans.”

SEE ALSO: NRA Sues San Francisco After City Declares It A ‘Domestic Terrorist Organization’

The bill requires all federal agencies to send to the FBI a complete list of individuals who are or have been investigated for terrorism. The U.S. Attorney General must then ensure that these lists are incorporated into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is used to approve all firearm transfers from federal dealers.

If anyone who has been investigated for terrorism within the last 10 years tries to purchase a firearm, that purchase will be delayed for no longer than 10 days, according to the bill. In the interim, the FBI may file an emergency petition with a court seeking to suspend that person’s gun rights and arrest them.

The court must grant the petition if it finds “probable cause to believe that the person is engaged, or has been engaged, in conduct constituting, in preparation of, in aid of, or relating to terrorism, or providing material support or resources therefor.”

SEE ALSO: Democratic Party Official Says 2A Supporters are ‘Homegrown Terrorists’

“Probable cause” is the standard usually required before police make an arrest, conduct a search, or receive a warrant. Most red flag laws require a higher standard of evidence.

The accused person does have the ability to attend the hearing with legal counsel, according to the bill. The court is directed to ensure that the person receives actual notice of the hearing and has the opportunity to participate.

Terrorist “watch lists” have been criticized by civil rights watchdogs since they were instituted in the Patriot Act of 2001. It’s unclear how these lists are compiled or managed, and some accuse federal agencies of using them to attack political opponents. A federal judge ruled in 2019 that these lists violate the constitutional rights of U.S. citizens, but law enforcement agencies continue to maintain them.  

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 48 comments… add one }
  • Ej harbet February 19, 2021, 8:04 am

    Marco needs to go home defeated.
    If there was any justice his consequence for violating his oath would be immediate and others would discover shall not be infringed means something. But they’ve been using the constitution for arsewipe for a long time

  • Dave February 15, 2021, 2:29 pm

    What constitutes “investigated?”

    A credible threat posed by a jerk with a similar name?
    An actual arrest record?
    Being put on “a list” by libtard or conservative activists?
    Subscribing to a news-group some deep-state bureaucrat decides he doesn’t like?
    Posting the wrong opinion on the right social media group?
    An AI bot reviewing your entire history and deciding you’re undesirable?
    Is there a way to get the record corrected?
    Is there recourse against a politically motivated troll who falsely accuses you?
    Is this our gateway to French Revolution style public executions?

    This is just another expression of cancel culture.

  • krinkov545 February 15, 2021, 12:25 pm

    Isn’t Rubio the infamous “bubble boy” who danced in his jock straps with a floor of other young men? Don’t push morality on normal people you vile freak!

  • bruce February 15, 2021, 10:46 am

    Aww, those poor suspected terrorists; one lets them have any fun!

  • Phillip DeWitt February 15, 2021, 10:44 am

    Rubio must want a job in the Biden administration. His career is over with that kind of thinking.

  • Ratrod February 15, 2021, 9:40 am

    No matter how well intended, Rubio and all others take an oath to keep and defend The Constitution of The U.S.A. That little bill he is pushing is unconstitutional and he needs someone to nudge him back in his lane! Now, if that person were to be convicted of terrorism, that would be different. Maybe we could just have the entire swamp politicians investigated for terrorism against it’s citizens! Then, that would get him thinking correctly.

    • Ej harbet February 19, 2021, 8:09 am

      Immediate permanent lifetime ban from elected office and 10 years in fed prison should be the consequence for his and others crimes of oath violation. If you take the oath you should read the constitution and not break your oath to defend it.

  • Rob February 15, 2021, 9:33 am

    This guy is just like Osamabama……..smooth talker with nothing to contribute to actually help the American people.

  • Deitznuts February 15, 2021, 8:22 am

    That little loudmouth is not very bright. Unless you have proof you cannot LEGALLY take away Constitutional rights. You think someone is a terrorist? Prove it! Do your damned job correctly, law enforcement.

  • The SGM February 15, 2021, 7:35 am

    Rubio may have good intentions but the method, creating or using Watch Lists, I believe was already deemed Un-Constitutional by the Supreme Court. But in the minds of the ‘all things weapons and 2nd Amendment” crowd what does it matter(?), for we can enact now and worry about the Courts latter. It would appear that Rubio is attempting an end run around the 2nd Amendment by chipping away at it.

  • jesus February 15, 2021, 6:11 am

    hello again ..
    WE ALL KNOW THAT LITTLE MARCO HAS ALWAYS BEEN A LITTLE WORM OF A BOY… NEVER HAD AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT OR ENOUGH BRAINS TO FILL A WATER GLASS…. REMEMBER HE DESTROYED LITTLE DONNY WHEN HE WAS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND THEN BECAME HIS BOYFRIEND AFTER TRUMPEE BECAME PRESIDENT.. LITTLE BOY MARCO… lots of BJ’s going on there for little Marco … trumpee little lap doggy with benefits

    the law he proposes is likely unconstitutional as no crime was
    proven in court of even in a court
    process … investigations happen all the time on innocent folks.. EVEN
    on him perhaps… remember Marco has a brain like snail. .. and no values or spine ..

  • jesus February 15, 2021, 6:10 am

    hello WE ALL KNOW THAT LITTLE MARCO HAS ALWAYS BEEN A LITTLE WORM OF A BOY… NEVER HAD AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT OR ENOUGH BRAINS TO FILL A WATER GLASS…. REMEMBER HE DESTROYED LITTLE DONNY WHEN HE WAS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND THEN BECAME HIS BOYFRIEND AFTER TRUMPEE BECAME PRESIDENT.. LITTLE BOY MARCO… lots of BJ’s going on there for little Marco … trumpee little lap doggy with benefits

    the law he proposes is likely unconstitutional as no crime was
    proven in court of even in a court
    process … investigations happen all the time on innocent folks.. EVEN
    on him perhaps… remember Marco has a brain like snail. .. and no values or spine ..

  • jesus February 15, 2021, 6:09 am

    WE ALL KNOW THAT LITTLE MARCO HAS ALWAYS BEEN A LITTLE WORM OF A BOY… NEVER HAD AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT OR ENOUGH BRAINS TO FILL A WATER GLASS…. REMEMBER HE DESTROYED LITTLE DONNY WHEN HE WAS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND THEN BECAME HIS BOYFRIEND AFTER TRUMPEE BECAME PRESIDENT.. LITTLE BOY MARCO… lots of BJ’s going on there for little Marco … trumpee little lap doggy with benefits

    the law he proposes is likely unconstitutional as no crime was
    proven in court of even in a court
    process … investigations happen all the time on innocent folks.. EVEN
    on him perhaps… remember Marco has a brain like snail. .. and no values or spine ..

  • WyoMilGen1 February 15, 2021, 5:58 am

    Rubio has always been a snake-in-the-grass, just like Sasse and Cassidy! RINOs all! We were invaded by these snakes long ago as a “Fifth Column” and now they have all the power: They are just setting things up to finish-off the Republic and hand the land too the Chinese. We just kept re-electing the same crooks, term-after-term, for decades and never even CARED what they were actually DOING! Now we know!

  • Jose February 12, 2021, 3:00 pm

    Could we identify the specific bill to which this story refers? It’s pretty useless to stir up people’s outrage and not even tell them what specific bill it is. What am I going to tell my legislator? “I saw this article on http://www.gunsamerica.com about a bad bill…”. Can we apply some common sense and cite things properly so that there is useful information provided? Kthx.

  • Roy Land February 12, 2021, 12:56 pm

    Box cutters should be included. I don’t want any rights. They are so lame. I need someone to tell me what to do and when to do it. I’m just a mule. Kick me while you’re at it. I’m already studying Chinese and learned how to say, “Can I have another peanut?”, “Can you loosen these chains”, “I adore you master”.

  • Keith Suleski February 12, 2021, 11:22 am

    With Democrats in power we on the right, and all gun owners may be investigated as potential terrorists. Look at what they are saying about all Capitol protesters. This bill sucks.

    • jesus February 15, 2021, 6:20 am

      Keith. .. really ? did you bang your head on the fox clowns ?

      death and murder is not a party issues it’s an American issue to have reasonable laws.. standards…maybe on farms you can have the will west but not in cities with millions of people in close proximity. ..

      you really think GOP militia groups .. which are illegal in the USA … showing up at “rallies” with rifles is a good idea … swe the intimidation factors …would you want your babies in that environment?

      • Shanz February 15, 2021, 5:20 pm

        Yeah I agree Jesus, all the death and murder during The summer riots was very shocking huh? I mean that’s what you were talking about right?

  • mauser6863 February 12, 2021, 10:32 am

    Rubio needs to immediately placed on the “No Fly List”. Someone with his inflammatory and divisive rhetoric probably needs to be “Red Flagged” too. I think everything he says, including, “I want Ice Cream” is a secret “Dog Whistle” to his followers, calling for violence. He needs to be cancelled. LOL

  • SD February 12, 2021, 10:12 am

    Rubio has always been a RINO. He wants to give illegals citizenship, open the borders and now take away 2nd amendment rights. Maybe he should hand out handguns to those crossing the border.

  • VAP8RI0 February 12, 2021, 9:46 am

    Little Marco…just a few questions:

    Why are you not a Democrat?

    Why are you expanding government?

    Why are you adding to the infringement of constitutional law?

    How can you possibly believe that the one lawbreaker in thousands this may stop, will not create excruciating legal hoops to jump through for the rest, who are honest and completely innocent, but financially unable to defend themselves?

    And finally…do you really think you’re going to be re-elected by a constituency who sees you cuddling up to socialist policies?

    Best of luck with that Sir!

    • jesus February 15, 2021, 5:58 am

      😨VAPpy. .. perhaps you should take some critical thinking high school classes. ..
      gun laws are NOT socialism… socialism is about the government acting fir the common good… ie. social security, medicare, tax breaks, safe water laws … TV regulations. Airline safety regulations, mortgage regulations. .. banking regulations, farmer crop subsidies and loans. . roads and highways.. SCHOOLS… FOOD safety laws.. the military. . GUN SAFETY STANDARDS .. should I go on ?? ALL THIS IS SOCIALISM… UNLESS YOU LIVE ON A FARM… EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED FOR THE BENEFIT OF PEOPLE ..

      JUST BECAUSE GOP IDIOTS CALL IT SOCIALISM DOES NOT MEAN IT’S BAD…
      FASHISM IS WHAT YOU MEAN..

      • Elapid King February 15, 2021, 10:41 am

        Fascism, (learn to spell) is just another flavor of Socialism, which is the antithesis of liberty as the two cannot coexist. If you want the socialism, then please, relocate to any European nation of your choice as you, and the other sheep who desperately need a hand maid to wipe your behinds for you, have absolutely no right to transform this nation from it’s fundamental founding as a nation predicated upon liberty to a Socialist one, in any iteration.

  • graceythecat February 12, 2021, 8:40 am

    So guilty before even being charged is the communist democRATS mode of operation.

    • SD February 12, 2021, 10:03 am

      And Rubio calls himself a republican?

      • glock19fan February 12, 2021, 2:26 pm

        Rubio is a RINO _ a Wolf In Sheep’s Clothing. There is even a Biblical piece about avoiding them.

    • Hardtimez February 13, 2021, 6:10 pm

      Wasn’t it your master trump who said take their weapons first and worry about laws later?

  • Altoids February 12, 2021, 8:25 am

    Heck, why not suspend your gun rights if you were suspected of running a stop sign?

    Once headed down that road, there’s no end to the reasons for infringing on your gun rights.

    When his term is up, that guy needs to be looking for another job.

  • Gail Cotten February 12, 2021, 8:22 am

    Investigation, not even charged, let alone convicted? Currently, 100 million people are being investigated just for being alive! What is he thinking?

  • D.J. February 12, 2021, 8:08 am

    Whom is it that defines ” terrorism ” ?

    • glock19fan February 12, 2021, 2:35 pm

      According to DemonRats,, it’s “Anything we say it is!”

  • Robert Frasconi February 12, 2021, 7:50 am

    I would expect nothing less than this treason from Marco Rubio.

    He is a warmongering neo-Con who has no compunction about sending our men and women to murder humans overseas while he destroys rights on the home front they are supposedly fighting for.

    The late Justin Raimondo of Antiwar.com had Rubio pegged.

  • Roger J February 12, 2021, 7:47 am

    When I first started reading this I had many of the same reactions as others above. What immediately jumped right out at me was ‘due process’. Near the end it reads “The accused person does have the ability to attend the hearing with legal counsel, according to the bill. The court is directed to ensure that the person receives actual notice of the hearing and has the opportunity to participate.” It’s still a bad idea but at least it isn’t no fly lists and spying on Presidential candidates in a secret court by corrupt high ranking FBI and DOJ administrators.

  • Anthony Romano February 12, 2021, 7:07 am

    This bill will do nothing but damper the rights of law abiding citizens who could accidentally be put on this list while criminals continue to get guns on the streets or steal them!

  • Richard February 12, 2021, 6:42 am

    Investigated? Great, Rubio has come up with a fantastic original idea for the government to take away firearms. Fill out some paperwork, file it, no proof required, no need to even leave the office, just send the police. “Nothing to hide” simpletons are unable to connect two dots.

  • William Davis February 12, 2021, 6:33 am

    Hey Marco–

    If you don’t like being a Senator anymore just drop out. You don’t need to turn most of your constituents against you.

    Maybe you are considering a party switch because you know the real republican wolves are coming for you and pushing gun control would be a nice offering to the democrats?

    By the way, thanks for nothing when it came to defending Donald Trump. I think 2022 is going to be a long, long year for you.

    • Dan February 12, 2021, 2:02 pm

      Defending Trump? Trump should be enemy #1 on the terrorist list. I think this is a great idea, especially to get guns out of the hands to all who attended the Jan 6 coup attempt or follows Q anon. They obviously are unstable and intend to do the USA harm. They most certainly are NOT patriots. It is funny listening to all the Trumpers talking about following the Constitution when it is their dear leader and them who are dredging the Constitution through the mud.

      • Hardtimez February 13, 2021, 6:18 pm

        /\/\/\/\ +1

      • Jrp February 15, 2021, 8:56 am

        Really? Watch main stream media much there Dan? You’re so blue I can’t tell you from the sky. Nice agenda you’re pushing for them and their communist propaganda. I hope they don’t tell you next week that trump and qanon were really nazi’s too. What your world would be like then. Funny how all the video evidence has linked all the violence at the rally to BLM and antifa. Didn’t hear that did you? I know. I know. There was no election fraud and it was the most secure in the nation’s history. Crawl back into that communist whole you came from. We the people, even qanon, believe in equal rights under the law. Every American is presumed innocent and is afforded due process under the law. We do not have to prove to the government why we should have a right. They have to prove in a court of law why we should not have that right under the constitution. Every law just like background checks are unconstitutional. The government doesn’t give us rights. They are supposed to protect them from others taking them away. Red pill yourself or move to that great socialist society that is so great that has never worked ever. The line in the sand is the second amendment and they know it. That’s why they never stop attacking it. They take the guns and they can do whatever they want because only they will have them.

      • Shanz February 15, 2021, 5:25 pm

        Any more buzz words you saw on CNN you would like to pass off as your opinion?

  • SHDK February 12, 2021, 4:03 am

    TRAITOR

  • Mark N. February 12, 2021, 12:00 am

    Let’s just toss out fundamental constitutional rights, including the 1st, 2d and 5th, without a criminal conviction. Why, it won’t hurt a bit!
    Let’s think about this for a minute.
    If you use your first amendment right and express thoughts some find perhaps threatening, you can be investigated. If the investigation turns up nothing, the government can still try to block your acquisition of firearms. If past practice is any guide, the government will refuse to divulge the nature of the information developed during the investigation, as this is typically what occurs when people try to get off the no fly list.
    A terrorism investigation is a criminal investigation. If the government is trying to stop you from buying a firearm, it is fair to assume that that investigation remains open. Consequently, if you go to the hearing , absent an immunity agreement, anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. So you have a choice: testify and risk the government using your testimony against you in a criminal case, or assert your fifth amendment right and lost he right to purchase a firearm.
    Finally, since the burden of proof is so low, even less than that necessary to sustain a civil judgment (“a preponderance of the evidence,”i.e., more likely than not), the odds of convincing the judge that there is no probable cause at all seems remote.

    • Jrp February 15, 2021, 9:24 am

      Well said Mark. The writing was on the wall for the forefathers to see why we needed the amendments. This is stuff of kings and monarchy rule. They decide what rights you have on any given day. It’s called the ruling class which isn’t supposed to exist under the constitution. Except we have dominion and no term limits. I’m not sure we the people have been voting anyone in or out of office for a long time. Seems the ruling class has taken over such tasks.

      • Shanz February 15, 2021, 5:47 pm

        Great comments guys. That sums up my frustration with what’s going on very well. Seems like we live in a post Constitution/Bill of Rights era.

  • Dr Motown February 11, 2021, 2:52 pm

    Get your name inappropriately put on a “watch list” for whatever reason (duplicate name, false accusation, etc) and you’ll spend thousands of dollars and many wasted days trying to correct it….🤬

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