Imminent Vote In Congress To Repeal DC Gun Ban

Imminent Vote In Congress To Repeal DC Gun Ban
— DC digs in its heels, even while other communities are repealing their gun control
Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22151
Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Heller earthquake continues to send tremors through gun control communities in middle America.

Following the Supreme Court’s U.S. v. Heller decision in June, at least one town in West Virginia and two jurisdictions in Illinois have been forced to reconsider their gun control laws. The latter two — in Wilmette and Morton Grove, Illinois — repealed their handgun bans in July.

But while some communities have “seen the light,” others continue to dig in their heels. Take Washington, DC, where the city council has thumbed its nose at the Court’s ruling and has redrafted its registration law to impose a burdensome 12-step process that, as summarized in one legislative report, involves “multiple trips to gun dealers and government offices, fingerprinting, a written exam, and ballistic testing.”

At a minimum, some officers believe this process will take 14 days. But a more realistic assessment was offered by DC Police Chief Cathy Lanier who said the process “could take months.”

In response, the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote soon on legislation to simply repeal the DC gun ban — a vote that could come as early as today.

HR 6691, introduced by Rep. Travis Childers (D-MS), would repeal much of the gun control in the District — including the ban on semi-auto pistols and rifles, and the registration requirements which require residents to get permission from the city council before they can own a weapon.

The Childers bill will also strike the “trigger lock” provision which endangers gun owners by forcing the lucky ones who successfully jump through the 12-step process to render their guns unusable for immediate defensive purposes.

Faced with a discharge petition that had gained tremendous momentum — in large part, thanks to your efforts which was a response to an earlier GOA alert — the Democratic leadership realized that a bill to repeal the DC gun ban was definitely going to be brought out of committee and passed on the House floor. So the anti-gun leadership decided that the place to kill the bill was in the Senate.

Consider what news reports are saying:

“Although the bill is expected to pass in the House, possibly as soon as this week, its fate is less clear in the Senate,” reported The Washington Post this past Tuesday. “It has won the backing of 48 [House] Democrats, many facing reelection in strongly pro-gun areas, and is expected to pick up broad support among Republicans.”

Remarkably, the Post is right. (A stopped clock is also right twice a day.) The Democrats are trying to “have their cake and eat it too” by protecting Democrats from rural districts — allowing them to vote pro-gun — but then letting the bill die in the Senate.

That’s why GOA is encouraging members to contact their two senators at this time.