Meet the U.S. Senate’s Gun-Control Caucus

by
posted on June 22, 2023
Gun-Control Caucus
Art: Brad Walker

It is real American political theater to think of all the members of the U.S. Senate’s new gun-control caucus, which formally named itself the “Gun Violence Prevention Caucus,” sitting around a table in some hidden-away chamber in the Dirksen Senate Office Building plotting their many gun-control schemes—and, as you’ll see, they do have quite the list. This, after all, is how Hollywood has often treated the pro-freedom side.

Indeed, the members of this little gun-control cabal, as this was going to print, are a who’s who of senators who want to strip this civil right from we the people. They are Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and John Hickenlooper (D-Colo.).

Closed-door meetings and quiet handshakes do take place as one senator promises to co-sponsor another’s bill if that senator will vote for their proposed legislation (or if they won’t oppose some measure). And there are legislative tactics congressional leadership can use to rush legislation with little debate or, in some cases, to temporarily conceal what is in a bill—such is why Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) once famously (as it was an honest disclosure) gaffed when she referred to Obamacare: “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”

Also, with certain types of legislation, riders and earmarks can be attached at the last minute that might have nothing to do with what that legislation is supposed to do.

Still, this gun-control caucus will have a hard time secretly moving any of its agenda items forward, as the American process of writing, debating and passing major legislation through both chambers of Congress invites a lot of attention and discussion—and some of the people watching are your NRA-ILA lobbyists.

With all of that said, why did these anti-Second Amendment senators form a gun-control caucus?

Politics. Such a caucus allows them to gather for the cameras as they virtue-signal about their stated desire to “reduce gun violence,” as if guns are violent critters that need to be neutered or outright disposed of. These gun-control-caucus members know that much of the mainstream media will further their narratives without questioning the specifics. They also know they can use talking points related to such proposed legislation to fundraise and to make the claim to their voters that they’re trying to do something—and they can then add that the NRA, yes, your freedom-loving association, just won’t let them push it over on the American people.

Such is also why much of the proposed legislation on this gun-control caucus’ list have disingenuous titles. And it’s why all of these legislative ideas are worded with misleading explanations.

This caucus’ ideas include the Age 21 Act (legislation that would strip away the constitutional rights of law-abiding, legal adults), a new Assault Weapons Ban (an idea that blames guns instead of criminals for crimes), the Crime Gun Tracing Modernization Act (an act that would create a national gun-owner database), Ethan’s Law (legislation to empower federal agents to go into citizens’ homes to enforce gun-storage mandates), the Protecting Kids from Gun Marketing Act (legislation to empower the Federal Trade Commission to censor advertising from firearms companies and groups) and much more.

Also, as this was going to print, this gun-control caucus said they planned to introduce the 3D Printed Gun Safety Act, the Accountability for Online Firearms Marketplaces Act, the Background Check Completion Act, the Federal Firearm Licensing Act, the Gun Violence Prevention Through Financial Intelligence Act, the Keeping Gun Dealers Honest Act and much more. Explanations of what these bills would contain are thin, but, given the past positions of these caucus members, it isn’t hard to fill in the gun-control details.

Now, for a moment, imagine if a Second Amendment-supporting caucus in the U.S. Senate were to come up with its own list. They could have The Individual Freedom Act (a national reciprocity bill), the Civil-Rights Act for Self-Preservation (a bill to ensure the disenfranchised get their Second Amendment freedom, too), the Right to Stop Evildoers Act (an end to “gun-free” zones) … well okay, all of those ideas aren’t deceptive in the least; they are honest, so the comparison to the gun-control legislation really doesn’t hold up.

The point is, these senators have created a gun-control caucus to provide fuel for even more agenda-driven gun-control coverage from mainstream-news outlets. Instead of targeting the actual problem—the criminals who use guns to harm others—this gun-control caucus is yet another political tool designed to blame America’s 100-million-plus gun owners for the actions of criminals.

This, then, is not a “Gun Violence Prevention Caucus,” as they call themselves, as that would be a caucus focused on legislation that goes after violent criminals; this is, rather, a gun-control caucus focused solely on disempowering average Americans.

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