Thursday, December 07, 2017

Get To Know Concealed Carry Reciprocity-- Paul Ryan Just Rammed It Through Congress


Ready for more gun mayhem-- even if you live in a state with rational gun laws? Yesterday afternoon, Congress took a procedural vote providing for consideration of H.R. 38, Richard Hudson's Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act, which happens to be the NRA's #1 priority for the current session of Congress. The procedural motion passed 232-194, four Blue Dogs crossing the aisle to vote with the Republicans: Henry Cuellar (TX), Collin Peterson (MN), Vicente Gonzalez (TX) and Sanford Bishop (GA). The underlying bill itself has three Democratic cosponsors: Cuellar, Peterson and Bishop. There were 10 Republican NO votes, all kooks and nuts like Louie Gohmert, Jim Jordan and Steve King who didn't feel the bill went far enough. A few hours later the bill itself passed 231-198 with fully 6 NRA-lovin' Democrats on board:
Sanford Bishop (Blue Dog-GA)
Henry Cuellar (Blue Dog-TX)
Vicente Gonzalez (Blue Dog-TX)
Ron Kind (New Dem-WI)
Collin Peterson (Blue Dog-MN)
Kurt Schrader (Blue Dog-OR)
It's worth mentioning-- for the umpteenth time-- that if the DCCC gets its way, 2019 will see many more NRA-supporting Democrats in Congress. Ben Ray Lujan and Nancy Pelosi have freely and publicly admitted that the DCCC is now working with the Blue Dog Caucus to recruit more Blue Dogs into Congress. I spoke to one of them a few months ago, Andrew Janz, and, after saying he doesn't know what "single payer" is and professing to have never heard of the phrase "Medicare For All," he offered to tell me what is motivating his run for the Central Valley district seat held by Devin Nunes. I was stunned when he told me-- unprompted-- that there are two over-arching reasons he's running-- to protect the 2nd Amendment and to make sure the death penalty is more widely used. Ah, yes, another DCCC-type fake Democrat, taking a firm stand against the energy that is propelling a Democratic take-over of Congress.

The L.A. Times editorial yesterday, No matter how they dress it up, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act is really bad policy, was a warning that wasn't needed by L.A. area Democrats and was ignored by all the L.A. area Republicans (like Ed Royce, Steve Knight, Mimi Walters, Dana Rohrabacher and Darrell Issa). The Times editors noted that the bill is "a spectacularly stupid and dangerous piece of legislation intended to undercut the right of states to determine what qualifications a person must meet before being allowed to carry a concealed firearm."
Under the proposed reciprocity law, anyone with a valid permit from another state would be able to carry a concealed firearm in California, even if they do not meet California’s more stringent standards. This is a highly objectionable infringement on the responsibilities of state and local law enforcement to maintain public safety, and is clearly aimed at undermining gun control efforts nationally. What’s more, it will put guns into the hands of more people who shouldn’t have them.
Gabby Giffords' gun control organization released some radio and TV ads in a few swingy GOP districts urging voters to contact their members of Congress and urge them vote NO. It's just a partisan election ad, not one meant to change any votes. This is the radio ad and here's the TV ad, These are the targeted congressmembers:
Jason Lewis, MN-02
Rodney Frelinghuysen, NJ-11
Steve Knight, CA-25
Ed Royce, CA-39
Mimi Walters, CA-45
Mike Coffman, CO-06
Lee Zeldin, NY-01
Barbara Comstock, VA-10

The irony here isn't the Giffords was an Arizona Blue Dog who supported the NRA before she was shot but that she recently backed another NRA-supporting gun nut, Ann Kirkpatrick, who's running against several normal gun control-supporting Democrats in Giffords' own old Tucson-area district. I guess that helps explain why Giffords' ad didn't run in any of the Democratic districts with NRA congressmen or candidates. Here's how Kirkpatrick talks about the NRA and their agenda. Keep in mind when you read these quotes, that Kirkpatrick, who isn't even from anywhere near this district, is being relentlessly pushed not just by Giffords but by the DCCC and the New Dems as well.
"I am not going to allow Washington to ignore the values of Arizonans and the traditions of four generations of my family in District One, and I am proud to be pushing back against the federal government to stop our Constitutional rights from being infringed. Every time the anti-gun rights groups propose legislation that restricts our freedoms, I am going to make sure they know millions of Americans will fight them every inch of the way." [Congressional Documents and Publications. May 13, 2010. "Rep. Kirkpatrick Updates Greater Arizonans on Her Fight to Defend Second Amendment Rights in Tele-Town Hall."]

Kirkpatrick welcomed the NRA to Phoenix for its annual convention, calling it "one of the country’s oldest continuously operating civil liberties organizations" in a press release.

"As a gun owner myself, I firmly believe in the right of all Americans to keep and bear arms, and I am proud that my state is hosting the group that has protected that right for 138 years. This is a chance for Arizonans to show our nation’s leaders we will not let them take away our freedoms."

"People in Washington need to stop undermining the Second Amendment. That’s why I took on the Attorney General for his proposal to ban so-called 'assault weapons.' I will continue to work vigilantly to maintain and protect our Second Amendment rights against every challenge they face."  [States News Service. July 22, 2009. "Rep Kirkpatrick Reaffirms Support for Critical Second Amendment Protections, Continues 'Defending Arizona Values' Campaign."]

Kirkpatrick was a co-sponsor for the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act which allows those authorized to carry firearms in their home state to travel with their weapons. [Congressional Documents and Publications. November 20, 2009. "Rep. Kirkpatrick Emphasizes Importance of Protecting Second Amendment Rights to Greater Arizonans in Tele-Town Hall."]

Kirkpatrick agreed with a radio caller in 2010 that citizens should be able to buy and own fully automatic firearms. "I agree with you, I think people should be able to legally purchase and carry the gun they want." She also stated that she opposed bans on some types of firearms, opposed DC and Chicago laws barring private ownership of some gun types, and supported allowing guns in national parks.[Arizona Daily Sun. January 10, 013. “Kirkpatrick pivots on guns.”]

Kirkpatrick did not support President Obama’s call to reinstitute the assault weapons ban and limit magazine size. [Eastern Arizona Courier (Safford, Arizona). February 5, 2013. “Kirkpatrick talks guns, jobs, water.”]

Kirkpatrick continued her opposition to limiting extended magazines.

Kirkpatrick was the only Congressional Democrat in Arizona to receive an "A" rating from the NRA in the last decade which she maintained through Fall 2012. [The Arizona Republic April 5, 2013. Final Chaser Edition. "Arizona’s Gun Divide."]
Not that I'm saying Giffords' organization is completely useless, quite the contrary. Despite her shocking and hypocritical endorsement of Kirkpatrick, which would have added another Democratic vote to the Concealed Carry Reciprocity win for the NRA today, Resist the Gun Lobby debunked 7 myths perpetrated by the NRA and their allies (like Kirkpatrick):
MYTH 1: Concealed carry reciprocity will make it easy for people to travel with their permits nationwide, similar to how driver’s licenses work.


Unlike concealed carry permits, driver’s licenses are standard, verifiable documents that meet almost the same criteria in every state. In fact, in order to be recognized by federal agencies, driver’s licenses must meet federal criteria established by the REAL ID Act that contain physical security features including a photo of its holder and uniform data such as identity, date of birth, principal residence address, etc.

Concealed carry permits, on the other hand, do not contain uniform information or standard security features. Permits’ appearances vary significantly among states: some states issue permits that resemble paper library cards, while others issue permits that lack photo identification. In order to verify the authenticity and validity of a permit, law enforcement would have to contact the issuing agency in the permit holder’s state because no national database--  and sometimes no statewide database-- containing concealed carry permit information exists.

Furthermore, to obtain a driver’s license, people must also undergo several forms of testing--  including a vision exam, exams that test knowledge of driving and relevant laws, and an in-person driving test. Underage applicants in most states must also fulfill practice hours or complete driver’s education classes. Training to obtain a concealed carry permit, however, varies widely throughout the states. A number of states require classroom instruction and live-fire training to obtain a permit to carry concealed. In 19 states, however, individuals do not need to undergo any training to carry concealed. In 12 states, individuals do not even need a permit-- no less any training-- to carry concealed, loaded firearms in public.

If concealed carry reciprocity becomes law, untrained individuals could carry concealed, loaded firearms nationwide. The lack of identifying data and divergent information on concealed carry permits would present a serious challenge for a law enforcement officers seeking to determine if an individual is lawfully carrying a concealed gun. This would create a lengthy, complicated process that would take law enforcement away from critical policing duties. In many cases, law enforcement could lack the ability to verify if concealed carry permits are forged or stolen, allowing guns to fall into dangerous hands.

MYTH 2: People with concealed carry permits are law-abiding and highly trained.


While many states require concealed carry permit applicants to demonstrate that they have received firearm safety training, the gun lobby has worked aggressively in state capitols to weaken or eliminate training requirements for permit holders.

The most drastic example of the erosion of state standards is the proliferation of “permitless” carry states. In 2011, the last time the U.S. House of Representatives took up a concealed carry reciprocity proposal, three states did not require a permit to carry concealed. In 2013, the last time the U.S. Senate voted on this proposal, four states did not require a permit to carry concealed. Today, 12 states do not require a permit or any training to carry a concealed, loaded handgun in public and 19 additional states do not require any training to obtain a permit. Law enforcement in the 12 “permitless” carry states have no way to know who is carrying concealed guns, let alone if these are trained or law-abiding individuals.

Additionally, many states poorly manage their concealed carry permitting systems. Dangerous flaws in permitting systems in North Carolina, Tennessee, Colorado, and other states have allowed individuals disqualified by criminal convictions, including convicted felons and individuals with outstanding arrest warrants, to nevertheless maintain concealed carry permits. Many of these permit holders go on to commit further crimes.

MYTH 3: Laws that make it easier for people to carry concealed guns will reduce crime. Every year, millions of gun owners and concealed carry permit holders use firearms defensively, thwarting crime and attackers.


There is no credible statistical evidence that shows that weak concealed carry laws reduce crime. In fact, the evidence suggests that permissive concealed carry laws may actually increase the frequency of some types of crime, such as assault. One recent study found that states that award concealed carry permits to anyone who meets minimum standards experience 13 to 15 percent more violent crime than states with stronger laws. Overall, research confirms the commonsense conclusion that more guns create more opportunities for injury and death, not fewer.

Claims that firearms are used defensively millions time every year have also been widely discredited. Even when a firearm is used in self-defense, which is rare, research shows that a firearm is no more likely to reduce a person’s chance of being injured during a crime than other various forms of protection. One study suggests that carrying a firearm may actually increase a victim’s risk of firearm injury during the commission of a crime.

Few Americans believe the U.S. would be safer if more people carried guns. Just 35 percent of voters surveyed by a June 2017 Quinnipiac Poll believe that the country would be a safer place to live if more people carried guns.

MYTH 4: Concealed carry permit holders who are lawfully able to carry in their state are often considered “accidental criminals” just because they are traveling to another state with a concealed firearm.


Currently, each state decides whether it will recognize concealed carry permits issued by other states. Through reciprocity agreements, states ensure that permit holders from one state can travel to another state with a loaded, concealed firearm without endangering public safety. Concealed carry permit holders can easily check to determine whether their permits are recognized in other states, as states make this information directly available online. Furthermore, if a permit holder wants to travel with a gun through a state that does not recognize his or her permit, the permit holder only needs to properly lock the gun in the trunk of the car-- federal law already guarantees the permit holder that authority.

Concealed carry reciprocity would not create a national permitting standard. Instead it would require states to accept all permits and permissions to carry from all other states even if they don’t meet the requirements in that state. The wide array of state laws would remain intact and concealed carry reciprocity would only reinforce the confusing patchwork of state laws that currently exists.

MYTH 5: Concealed carry reciprocity would NOT override existing state and local gun laws governing where people can carry.


The House version of concealed carry reciprocity would override a host of state and local laws that currently prohibit permit holders from carrying guns in places like bars, daycare centers, places of worship, athletic events, and near polling places. These laws allow private property owners to prohibit guns on their property, and enable law enforcement to anticipate where they are most and least likely to encounter armed individuals. For example:
In Florida and many other states, a concealed handgun license doesn’t authorize the license holder to carry a concealed handgun into a bar.
Administrative regulations in Indiana prohibit the carrying of guns in certain casinos and childcare centers.
Louisiana prohibits the carrying of concealed handguns in churches, synagogues, mosques, and other places of worship, unless special requirements are met.
These kinds of laws are common across the country, and law enforcement, private property owners, and the public rely on them. Concealed carry reciprocity would override these laws, allowing guns in spaces most people assume are gun-free.

MYTH 6: Concealed carry reciprocity doesn’t make it any easier to buy a gun.


Gun traffickers frequently cross state lines to obtain guns from states with the weakest laws. Concealed carry reciprocity would make it easier for them to do that. It would tie the hands of law enforcement officers who encounter armed, out-of-state residents, who may be trafficking guns.

Under the House version of concealed carry reciprocity, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, a law enforcement officer who pulls over a person with a permit could face a lawsuit for questioning the person. An unscrupulous concealed carry permit holder would be able to gather large number of guns in states with weak gun laws, and then cross state lines unencumbered by questioning at traffic stops. Those guns would then be available in the criminal market, making us all less safe.

MYTH 7: Law enforcement officers support concealed carry reciprocity.


Major law enforcement groups, including Major Cities Chiefs Association, Police Foundation, and Police Executive Research Forum, oppose concealed carry legislation. The House version of concealed carry reciprocity goes a step beyond the Senate version and exposes law enforcement to personal litigation if officers mistakenly question a person’s legal authority to possess a firearm. As a result, officers would fear conducting thorough investigations and would be deterred from effectively doing their jobs.

In a letter urging Congress to oppose the House bill, 9 national law enforcement organizations, including the groups referenced above, state that “The lack of consistent and in many cases the absence of training standards coupled with the exposure of agencies and police officers to tort claims present an unacceptable risk to the public, specifically our law enforcement personnel. We reject the idea that one state’s approach to carrying a concealed firearm will work across every state, city or community. States and localities should have the right to legislate concealed carry.”

Carol Shea-Porter explained her vote against this yesterday to her New Hampshire constituents. "Today I voted against the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act because it would undermine states’ rights and would expose law enforcement officers to lawsuits and an increased risk of harm. That’s why leading law enforcement organizations, including the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Police Executive Research Forum, are opposing this bill. Moreover, at a time when the majority of Americans want Congress to work on bipartisan solutions that address the national epidemic of gun violence, passing the NRA’s top legislative priority to loosen gun safety laws takes us in the wrong direction."

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At 8:32 AM, Blogger orangelion03 said...

So much for state's rights. Then again, IOKIYAR NRA shill.

At 8:35 AM, Blogger orangelion03 said...

Or a NRA felating Blue DOg.

At 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's starting to smell like Nazi Germany more and more. Now the irregular "brown shirts" or whatever color they end up wearing, can now enjoy unfettered travel.

Not baby steps any more.

The only way for "states" to exert their rights any more is to secede.


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