President Barack Obama on Tuesday detailed the series of executive orders he is prepared to sign, bypassing Congress and instituting new gun-control measures on his own authority. The orders, which the White House summarized here, cover a range of initiatives—including expanding background checks to private sellers deemed “high-volume,” as well as increasing funding and resources for law enforcement and the background check system. The president is also calling for the departments of Defense, Justice and Homeland Security to intervene in the development and implementation of so-called “smart-gun” technology.
The NRA Institute for Legislative Action released a statement responding to the president’s announcement. It reads, in part:
The proposed executive actions are ripe for abuse by the Obama administration, which has made no secret of its contempt for the Second Amendment. The NRA will continue to fight to protect the fundamental, individual right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed under our Constitution. We will not allow law-abiding gun owners to be harassed or intimidated for engaging in lawful, constitutionally protected activity—nor will we allow them to become scapegoats for President Obama's failed policies.
After President Barack Obama called for new gun restrictions following the terrorist shootings in San Bernardino, Calif., in December, lawful firearms sales across the U.S. skyrocketed, with more firearms sold that month than in almost any other month in nearly 20 years, The New York Timesreported after analyzing federal background check data.
While firearms sales doubled nationally between 2002 and 2013, this same dynamic—anti-gun legislation prompting Americans to increasingly acquire more firearms—also held true at the state level. After New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie proposed new gun controls in 2013, gun sales spiked there—just as they did in Maryland after Gov. Martin O’Malley signed one of the most onerous gun bans in the nation, and residents scrambled to buy guns before that law took effect.
In other words, these anti-gun politicians seem to be actually increasing the possession and prevalence of the very firearms they seek to demonize and deny.
Trump Slams Clinton For Armed Bodyguards
During the Dec. 19 Democratic presidential debate, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton remarked, “Guns, in and of themselves, in my opinion, will not make Americans safer.”
Now, the Republican presidential front-runner has challenged Clinton to put her money where her mouth is. “Hillary said that guns don’t keep you safe,” Donald Trump tweeted on Monday. “If she really believes that, she should demand that her heavily armed bodyguards quickly disarm!”
While Trump also employs bodyguards, he believes self-defense is a right for all Americans: “The Second Amendment's purpose is to guarantee our right to defend ourselves … This is about self-defense, plain and simple.”
Despite Clinton’s reliance on guns for protection, she has made gun control for the rest of us a cornerstone of her campaign. So which is it, Mrs. Clinton? If guns are good enough to keep you safe, why would you refuse to afford that right to the rest of us?
Louisiana Will Consider “Permitless” Carry
Louisiana State Rep. Barry Ivey has introduced a measure that would recognize “permitless” concealed carry in the state. House Bill 4 proposes to add the following language to Article 1, Section 11 of the state constitution:
The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms includes the right to possess a concealed handgun without the necessity of obtaining a permit or license, unless the person is prohibited from possessing a firearm under the laws of Louisiana or the laws of the United States.
This bill would make Louisiana the eighth state to recognize “permitless” carry, often termed “constitutional carry.” HB 4 has been referred to the House Committee on Administration of Criminal Justice, which must pass it before it can move to the House floor. If the bill passes, the constitutional amendment would be voted on by the people of Louisiana.
Seattle’s Guns & Ammo Tax Forces Gun Store Out Of The City
Seattle’s new tax on firearms and ammunition, which places a $25 tax for every firearm and up to 5 cents for each round of ammunition sold within the city, took effect Jan. 1, prompting one owner to move his business elsewhere. “Selling firearms is no longer feasible in Seattle, so we’re moving north,” Precise Shooter store owner Sergey Solyanik told to The Seattle Times.
Solyanik said Monday that he’s close to signing a lease in nearby Lynnwood. Precise Shooter has stopped selling firearms and ammunition, but will remain open to sell reloading equipment and cleaning supplies until his business license is approved for the new store. Opponents filed a notice of appeal after their lawsuit against the tax was dismissed last month. A state law prohibits cities from regulating firearms, and plaintiffs in the case say that officials are using the tax as a workaround to do something they have no authority to do.
Missouri Woman Says Gun Rights Saved Her Life
Katie Claxton of Springfield, Mo., had just stopped at a gas station with her husband and four children when a man exhibiting strange behavior approached their car. She attempted to lock the doors, but accidentally rolled down the window, at which point the man reportedly reached inside the car brandishing a knife. Claxton’s husband drew a firearm and pointed it at the suspect, causing him to back away from the car. The family then followed him in their car until police arrived on the scene and arrested him.
As reported in the Springfield News-Leader, the suspect told Claxton before departing that she was “lucky” her husband had a gun. She credits the family’s safety to their right to bear arms. “Our Second Amendment right to carry is what saved our lives,” she said. “If we didn’t have our right to carry, I feel like we wouldn’t be here today.”