State Alerts

Sen. Mark Begich's Anti-Gun Votes in 2013

The following votes comprise Alaska Senator Mark Begich’s anti-gun votes in 2013.  (Senator Begich currently has a D rating from Gun Owners of America.)

Each section below contains an explanation of his anti-gun votes, along with the URL where each vote is posted on the Senate website:

Begich supported an anti-gun judge. With 60 votes needed to end a filibuster of Caitlin Halligan’s confirmation, the Senate failed to invoke cloture on March 6, 2013 by a 51-41 vote.  As New York’s Solicitor General, Halligan was one of the chief lawyers responsible for New York’s baseless and politically motivated efforts to bankrupt gun manufacturers using frivolous litigation. She stated in a speech on May 5, 2003, that “handgun manufacturers [should be held] liable for criminal acts committed with handguns.”  GOA scored a vote AGAINST cloture -- thus keeping Halligan from being confirmed to the DC Court of Appeals -- as a pro-gun vote.  Sadly, Mark Begich voted in favor of the anti-gun Halligan nomination.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00030

Begich opposed banning future gun control. With 60 votes needed for passage, a Mike Lee amendment lost by a vote of 50-49 on March 23, 2013.  The Lee amendment would prohibit any future gun control legislation which does not have a 2/3 vote in the Senate.  GOA scored a vote IN FAVOR OF the Lee amendment to the budget resolution as a pro-gun vote.  But Mark Begich voted against the pro-gun Lee amendment.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00087

Begich supported increased penalties for selling guns to certain veterans. With 60 votes needed for passage, the Leahy amendment failed by a vote of 58-42 on April 17, 2013.  Similar to the underlying Reid bill (S. 649), the Pat Leahy amendment would send a person to prison for 15 years for selling a gun to a veteran, without realizing that he was one of the 150,000-plus military veterans who was put into the NICS system for PTSD. GOA scored a vote AGAINST the Leahy amendment to S. 649 as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich voted in favor of the anti-gun Leahy amendment.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00099

Begich opposed the filibuster of Obama’s ATF Director. On July 31, 2013, the Senate voted (60-40) to end a filibuster of Obama’s choice for ATF Director.  B. Todd Jones had served as the acting director of the ATF for almost two years, and yet he'd refused to clean up the rampant corruption at ATF or to discipline any of the agents who helped orchestrate Operation Fast & Furious.  The filibuster was the best opportunity to defeat the Jones nomination -- given that 60 votes were needed to move the nomination for a final vote.  A vote AGAINST cloture on the B. Todd Jones nomination is a vote to continue the filibuster, and is rated as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich was the deciding vote in ending the filibuster on the anti-gun Jones.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00196

Begich supported confirmation of Obama’s ATF Director. On July 31, 2013, the Senate confirmed Obama’s choice for ATF Director by a 53-42 vote.  B. Todd Jones had served as the acting director of the ATF for almost two years, and yet he'd refused to clean up the rampant corruption at ATF or to discipline any of the agents who helped orchestrate Operation Fast & Furious.  A vote AGAINST the B. Todd Jones nomination is rated as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich voted for the anti-gun Jones.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00197

Begich opposed defunding anti-gun ObamaCare (first filibuster). On September 27, 2013, the Senate voted to end a filibuster waged by Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) to defund the anti-gun ObamaCare mandate.  Continued funding of the ObamaCare mandate means that doctors will be able to ask their patients about guns,(†) and health information can be used to deny guns to millions of Americans -- just as more than 150,000 military veterans have already been denied.  Because the filibuster sought to stop the bill that funded ObamaCare, this vote (and the one on October 16) was the best opportunity to defeat the ObamaCare mandate -- given that 60 votes were needed to move the underlying bill along and bring it to the Senate floor for a final vote.  A vote AGAINST cloture on the continuing resolution (H.J.Res. 59) is a vote to continue the filibuster, and is rated as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich opposed pro-gun efforts to kill the ObamaCare mandate by voting YEA to end the filibuster of the resolution.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00206

Begich opposed defunding anti-gun ObamaCare (second filibuster). On October 16, 2013, the Senate voted to end debate -- that is, to end a filibuster -- on a giant appropriations bill (HR 2775) that continued to fund ObamaCare.  The purpose of the filibuster was to force Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to allow Republicans to offer an amendment to strip the anti-gun ObamaCare mandate -- something Reid refused to do.  Continued funding of the ObamaCare mandate means that doctors will be able to ask their patients about guns,(†) and health information can be used to deny guns to millions of Americans -- just as more than 150,000 military veterans have already been denied.  A NAY vote against ending debate on the appropriations bill is a vote to continue the filibuster, and is rated as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich opposed pro-gun efforts to kill the ObamaCare mandate by voting YEA to end the filibuster of the bill.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00218

Begich opposed defunding anti-gun ObamaCare (final passage). On October 16, 2013, the Senate passed (81-18) the continuing resolution (HR 2775), which contained funding for the anti-gun ObamaCare mandate.  Continued funding of the ObamaCare mandate means that doctors will be able to ask their patients about guns,(†) and health information will be used to deny guns to millions of Americans -- just as more than 150,000 military veterans have already been denied.  A vote AGAINST the continuing resolution (HR 2775) is rated as a pro-gun vote.  Mark Begich opposed pro-gun efforts to kill the ObamaCare mandate by voting for the bill.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00219

Begich supported opening the door to scores of anti-gun judges and even overturning Heller. On November 21, 2013, Harry Reid pulled the trigger on the “nuclear option,” which means that now only a simple majority of Senators (rather than 60 votes) is needed to end a filibuster on an anti-gun judicial nomination.  Reid did this for the ostensible purpose of packing the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals with three anti-gun judges -- one of whom has held that the Second Amendment doesn't protect the right to purchase firearms. But this vote now means that the Senate effectively has no rules and that, if Supreme Court “swing vote” Anthony Kennedy were to die or resign, Obama would shove through another virulently anti-gun Justice with a simple majority vote.  The “Obama Court” could then reverse the pro-gun Heller (2008) and McDonald (2010) decisions. The vote to invoke the “nuclear option” was very close (48-52).  The 48 YEAS were the pro-gun votes, as they were cast in an effort to uphold the Senate Parliamentarian’s ruling that 60 votes are needed to end a filibuster on a judicial nomination.  By voting NAY (in opposition to the Parliamentarian), Mark Begich voted IN FAVOR OF blowing up the Senate rules, thus allowing President Obama to begin packing the federal courts with anti-gun judges -- a process that has already begun.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=1&vote=00242

 


 

† While ObamaCare technically forbids the government from requiring doctors to ask their patients about guns in the home, President Obama’s Executive Action #16 in January, 2013, effectively invalidated this prohibition -- stating that “the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.”

 

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