Saturday, 02 March 2019

Congress Advances Gun Registry Via “Universal Background Checks”

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Under the guise of mandating “universal background checks,” Congress is working on a gun-control plot that would ban all private sales of firearms and essentially create a national gun registry. Among other concerns, gun-rights advocates warned that the scheme would enable future confiscation of firearms by government while making countless law-abiding citizens into criminals.

Whether the radical bill will become law remains unclear. But with the Senate likely to vote it down and the White House threatening a veto, gun-rights groups are cautiously optimistic while gearing up for a fight just in case.

With virtually no Republican support, House Democrats rammed through the so-called “Bipartisan Background Checks Act,” or H.R. 8, on February 27. It was not immediately clear what made the legislation “bipartisan,” as just eight GOP lawmakers — all of them left-wing Republicans in Name Only (RINOs) — supported the measure, while 188 voted against it. A handful of Democrats also voted against the bill. Activists hope the embarrassing collapse of expected GOP support will ensure that the bill dies before ever getting out of the U.S. Senate.

The bill is a lightning rod for criticism for several reasons. First of all, it is blatantly unconstitutional. The feds have no delegated authority to regulate firearms. And the federal government is explicitly barred under the Second Amendment from infringing on the right to keep and bear arms. Of course, requiring government permission to exercise a God-given right is an obvious infringement, and that would be obvious to everyone if the matter at hand involved free speech or religious freedom.

Another reason the legislation is so toxic is that it would facilitate future gun confiscation. “The instant background check is gun registration — the government will not answer when we ask how they are destroying the names and addresses, as required by law, of those that have been checked,” then-Gun Owners of America (GOA) chief Larry Pratt told The New American in a phone interview about similar scheming years ago. “They just don't respond; 'so sue us' is kind of the attitude that they have.”

And in virtually every case of gun confiscation throughout history, governments and tyrants created registries of weapons prior to confiscation. Both the National Socialist (Nazi) regime and the Soviet Communist regime relied on such records to disarm their victims, as did many other murderous tyrants. And more recently, European governments and even the state of California have used gun-registration schemes to facilitate gun confiscation. The end goal of those pushing the legislation is total civilian disarmament, GOA and others said.

Additionally, the legislation could make millions of Americans into criminals, analysts warned. For instance, under the bill's provisions mandating a “Brady” background check prior to each transfer, a person who simply hands their firearm to a friend without asking the FBI while they clean their guns together could be imprisoned for a year. Even gifting a firearm to a stepson or a daughter-in-law would make somebody a criminal under the statute.

The National Rifle Association also slammed H.R. 8. “This extreme gun-control bill will make criminals out of law-abiding Americans,” warned Chris Cox, the executive director of the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA). “It will also make it harder for good people to defend themselves and their families. Criminals, on the other hand, will continue to get their firearms the way they always have — through the black market, theft, and straw purchases.”

The NRA vowed to continue fighting the “extreme” legislation, even issuing a statement debunking the arguments made by gun-control advocates. “Forcing more government paperwork and additional fees on good people trying to exercise a constitutional right will do nothing to make Americans safer,” Cox added. “On behalf of our members and supporters, the National Rifle Association will continue to fight to preserve the constitutionally protected right to self-defense.”

Second Amendment groups celebrated the fact that Republicans did not budge. And the few that supported the bill will be targeted by gun-rights activists in the next election. The liberal GOP “list of shame,” as Gun Owners of America is calling it, includes Vernon Buchanan, Brian Mast, and Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida; Peter King of New York infamous for publicly supporting a Soviet-backed terror group; Will Hurd of Texas; Chris Smith of New Jersey; Fred Upton in Michigan; and Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania.

Gun Owners of America, the most principled defender of the God-given rights enshrined in the Second Amendment, celebrated the fact that Republicans were virtually totally united against the extreme measure. “To be sure, yesterday’s vote is not what the Democrats had planned for,” observed Michael Hammond, legislative counsel for GOA. “They had hoped that dozens of frightened Republicans would defect — and that the bill would go to the Senate as a genuinely bipartisan proposal.”

On top of that, GOP lawmakers managed to sneak what is being described as a “poison pill” into the legislation. Basically, under an amendment sponsored by a Republican from Georgia, illegal aliens who attempt to buy firearms would be automatically reported to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. With increasingly unhinged Democrats trying to abolish ICE and the border itself, the measure reportedly sent the Democrat Party caucus “into a tizzy.”

Now the bill goes to the Senate, where it faces a highly uncertain future. It seems that a majority in the Senate opposes the bill. And even if a majority could be rounded up, it would take 60 votes to pass. But Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer claimed the nation was “on the precipice of great change” when it comes to guns, adding that Democrats “will not flinch” and that the public is “aroused and strong.” It was not clear what he meant, as polls show Americans are becoming increasingly pro-gun rights.

However, if by some chance the scheme were to get through the Senate, the Trump administration has already released a statement warning that the president would veto it. Among other concerns, the White House said the scheme would “impose burdensome requirements” on certain firearm transactions, create record-keeping requirements, and impose “limitless fees” on everyday transactions. “The extensive regulation required by H.R. 8 is incompatible with the Second Amendment’s guarantee of an individual right to keep arms,” the administration said in the official policy statement.

Another bill moving through Congress, H.R. 1112, which passed with just three Republican votes, would extend the amount of time the FBI has to approve or deny a request to buy a gun from three days to 10, potentially putting lives of vulnerable people at risk. “This bill will empower abusers and violent predators by making their victims more vulnerable,” explained Representative Doug Collins (R-Ga.). “It will do nothing to make our communities safer but it will make it harder for law-abiding citizens to exercise their Second Amendment rights.”

As Democrats in Congress plot more attacks on gun rights, at the state level, opponents of the Second Amendment continue to face major setbacks. Just this week, lawmakers in Kentucky overwhelmingly approved a bill authorizing constitutional carry. In other words, no permit is needed to own or carry weapons. More than a dozen other states have enacted similar legislation in recent years, and the trend continues. Even in states where gun-control activists thought they had achieved a victory, such as a measure adopted in Washington State, the schemes are imploding as sheriffs refuse to enforce it. And when Obama threatened gun control, states and communities across America vowed to defy the feds.

Despite the Democrat Party's rhetoric, the reality is that gun control remains politically toxic in America. But that does not mean the threat is over — far from it. In fact, while the American people and the U.S. Constitution may be firm on protecting gun rights, the Deep State establishment is determined to disarm Americans. That is being pursued through billionaire-funded lobbying, indoctrination of children in public schools, media propaganda, vile demonization of the NRA, United Nations scheming, and more. Americans who hope to protect the Second Amendment and the God-given rights it secures must remain actively involved.

Photo: Elrepho385/iStock/Getty Images Plus 

Alex Newman is a contributor to The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook.

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