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Saturday, March 18, 2017

House Passes Bill To Restore Veterans’ Second Amendment Rights

By a vote of 240-175, the U.S. House passed the Veterans 2nd Amendment Protection Act (H.R. 1181) that will restore the due process rights of recipients of government benefits to veterans. 

Currently, the Veterans Administration effectively bars veterans receiving benefits, who appoint a “representative payee” to help them manage their affairs, from buying or possessing a firearm, bypassing their right to due process. An unintended consequence of the VA policy has been to keep many veterans, for whom hunting and shooting is a way of life, from seeking needed help for fear that the VA would deny their 2A rights. As of December 2015, the VA had stripped a staggering 260,000 veterans of their gun rights. 

President Trump signed legislation rolling back a similar Social Security Administration policy in February. At the time, media headlines misled readers, saying that it allowed the “severely mentally ill” to buy guns. On Friday, NPR began the same misleading drumbeat with the headline, “House Oks Bill Allowing ‘Mentally Incapacitated’ Veterans To Buy Guns.”