House Shoots Down 90-Day Gun Buyer Registration Attempt
House Shoots Down Attempt to Register Gun Buyers for 90 Days
— But Chairman Wolf works to kill several pro-gun amendments
(Thursday, July 19, 2001) — The expected shoot out occurred yesterday in the House of Representatives. Earlier this week, Gun Owners of America alerted you to possible amendments that would be offered to the Commerce-Justice-State bill (H.R. 2500).
Well, Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) offered his amendment requiring the FBI to keep gun buyers’ names for 90 days. Thankfully, the House listened to grassroots gun owners and shot down the Moran amendment by a vote of 268-161. You can see how your Representative voted by going to http://clerkweb.house.gov/cgi-bin/vote.exe?year=2001&rollnumber=244 on the internet.
Other Representatives came forward with gun-related amendments as well. And in almost every case, Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Frank Wolf (R-VA) used his official influence to kill each one. (The one amendment he “allowed” was an anti-gun amendment offered by Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas. More on this below.) Here’s a summary of what happened yesterday:
FBI Retention of Gun Buyers’ Names
As mentioned above, the House defeated the Moran amendment which sought to keep information on gun owners for 90 days. Attorney General John Ashcroft wants the FBI to keep gun buyers’ names for only 24 hours.
One member, Rep. Brian Kerns (R-IN), wanted to offer an amendment that would have prohibited the FBI’s “retention of any information” resulting from an instant background check. After having drafted his amendment, Kerns announced on the House floor that he would not offer the provision — a decision made in deference to Chairman Wolf.
Putting a Halt to Global Gun Control
There were two attempts made to stop the U.S. from participating in global gun control. The UN has been meeting during the past two weeks to discuss gun restrictions that every nation should follow. Representative Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD) offered an amendment specifying that no U.S. funds could be used to implement gun control recommendations adopted at the UN gun control conference. But Chairman Wolf stood up and “assured” Rep. Bartlett that his concerns could be taken care of without enacting legislation. As a result, Rep. Bartlett withdrew his amendment.
However, Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) was not to be denied. He offered an amendment to pull the U.S. out of the United Nations and cited the current gun control conference in New York as reason enough to boycott the international gun control organization.
“There have been explicit proposals made at the United Nations to have worldwide gun control,” Paul said. “No, they are not taking guns away from the government. They are taking guns away from civilians. If anybody understands our history, they will know that taking guns from civilians is exactly opposite of what the Founders intended.”
Despite the fact that Chairman Wolf spoke against his provision — and despite the fact that the Democratic leadership spoke against him as well — Rep. Paul insisted on putting everyone on record. His amendment failed, but you can see how your Representative voted by going to http://clerkweb.house.gov/cgi-bin/vote.exe?year=2001&rollnumber=245 on the internet.
Chairman Was Only Crying “Wolf;” Supports Lock-up Your Safety Programs After All
Well, it turns out the powerful subcommittee chairman (and GOA D-rated) Rep. Frank Wolf was not opposed to every gun amendment, and in the end, allowed one anti-gun provision to be tacked onto the bill by a voice vote.
Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) offered the amendment to protect the ability of states to keep pushing “lock up your safety” trigger lock initiatives. For example, in her home state of Texas, the administration funded the give-away of thousands of trigger locks — although about 20,000 of them were recalled after defects were discovered.
Many observers expected Wolf to rise and speak against the Lee amendment, in the same way he had worked against so many others.
Instead, Wolf said, “I rise to simply say that we accept the gentlewoman’s amendment.” The anti-gun amendment then passed without a recorded vote.
GOF Educating Americans on the Dangers of Trigger Locks
Gun Owners Foundation has produced a Public Service Announcement (PSA) and is now distributing the video to thousands of TV stations around the country. The PSA explains what happened in California last year, where two children died — they were pitchforked to death by a crazed drug addict — because a resident in the home could not access the household firearms in time. The guns were locked up in deference to California state law.
Consider how another attack ended differently. Just a few months prior to the pitchforking tragedy, a San Francisco man survived an attack because he disregarded the California law effectively requiring him to lock up his guns.
A.D. Parker woke up one night and was confronted by a thug with a tire iron. Thankfully, Mr. Parker had not locked up his guns. He didn’t have to fiddle around in the dark, looking for a trigger lock key or remembering a combination. Parker simply had to grab his gun, point it, and shoot the intruder. That is why A.D. Parker is still alive today.
GOF has produced two versions of the PSA — one with the grandmother of the slain children (mentioned above), and one with Sheriff Richard Mack. Those who wish to contribute to this important public safety project can call 703-321-8585 or visit http://www.gunowners.com/psatext.htm on the GOF website.