Marc’s GChat Status Expanded

Repeal of gun ban is being attached to DC Voting Rights Act

My friends Andy and Tim are telling me that the Senate is adding a repeal of the DC gun ban to the DC House Voting Rights Act. This essentially circumvents the DC City Council, and is just a ridiculous thing to do.

Worse, it seems likely to pass.

I don’t have access to CSPAN-2, but that is where he is watching if you care to tune in.

Haven’t found anything about it online, I’ll post a link when I can find one. If you happen to find anything about it online, post in the comments section.

Update: Tim made a good point just now, this thing is probably going to be struck down by the courts, so this all could be a moot point.

Update Again: The amendment itself would drop criminal penalties for possessing unregistered firearms inside the District of Columbia, and repeal the post-Heller gun registration regulations adopted by the D.C. Council.

Riffing hard from opposing views, here is what the Ensign amendment would do:

  • The amendment would allow D.C. residents to cross state lines to buy handguns in neighboring states
  • The amendment would bar D.C. from passing any law that would “prohibit, constructively prohibit, or unduly burden” gun ownership by anyone not barred by federal gun laws
  • The amendment repeals D.C.’s ban on .50 caliber sniper rifles, military-style semiautomatic assault weapons and high capacity ammunition magazines
  • The amendment repeals D.C.’s requirements that semiautomatic pistols manufactured after January 1, 2011, be microstamp-ready.
  • The amendment repeals many restrictions on who can own guns in favor of Federal restrictions. This includes; the prohibition on most persons under age 21 from possessing firearms (now 18), the prohibition on gun possession by anyone who has
    committed a violent crime or recent drug crime (that allows some who have committed violent crimes to possess hand guns), the prohibition on gun possession by anyone voluntarily committed to a mental institution in the last 5 years (unless they have a doctor’s certification), and the prohibition in D.C. law on gun possession by anyone who does not pass a vision test, including if they are blind
  • The amendment would repeal safe storage requirements and prohibit D.C. from enacting new safe storage laws,
  • The amendment would repeal even the most basic gun registration requirements** (**this seems fishy, I’m not sure if this is true, I’m going to check on this)

Thanks to Carly for the link.

And it just passed with 61 votes.

If I got anything wrong, let me know. Also, like I said, this is probably going to be struck down in the courts, so everyone take a deep breath.

The Updates Rain Down Upon Us: My friend Morgan brings up another good point. This still has to go through Conference, and the chances that it makes it through Conference with the gun provisions intact is small, if even existent at all.

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February 26, 2009 - Posted by | Politics | , ,

6 Comments »

  1. It passed 62-36, which means a LOT of Democrat and Moderate Republican support. DCist has the coverage:http://dcist.com/2009/02/live_blogging_day_3_of_senate_actio.php

    I am at a loss, maybe the Dems are hoping that this will be overturned anyways by the Court and that the Gun Ban will go away as well? This further shows how much I really despise Harry Reid and Joe (-mentum) Lieberman.

    With Lieberman, I was actually beginning to give him a little credit for shepharding this bill along and helping it get through the wacky stages–Kyl’s amendment for retrocession of DC to MD and some baloney about the Fairness clause of the FCC (which has nothing to do with this.

    Comment by Andy | February 26, 2009

  2. Yea, I’m a bit confused too. If someone who has been following this a lot closer than I have wants to way in, I would greatly appreciate it.

    Comment by marcsgchat | February 26, 2009

  3. I mean I think the Dems are confident that this will get ‘fixed’ in conference … but I’m hoping that the Senate won’t repass it if it comes out of committee without the gun amendment.

    This bill overall makes me hate the Democrats even more … this is just a piece of crap bill to make some people feel good that accomplishes absolutely nothing. With the passage of this bill, the Democrats will claim they care about DC and drop the issue altogether.

    I want DC Statehood, I’m not just interested in getting EHN a vote in the House. I don’t see this as a stepping stone process, it needs to be done in one foul swoop.

    If the Dems really care they should vote to Amend the Constitution (again, as they attempted in the 70s), without an expiration date on the amendment … and let the states pass it.

    As a sidebar- Kyl is an idiot.

    Comment by Tim | February 26, 2009

  4. cocktail can you delete my comment under #3 .. the first one

    Comment by Tim | February 26, 2009

  5. Sure. all set Tim.

    Comment by marcsgchat | February 26, 2009

  6. The problem is that the amendment passed with a completely different coalition than the initial vote to invoke cloture on the whole bill (or the final vote to pass the full bill). Virtually all Republicans voted for the amendment, and then a crew of moderate/pro-gun Dems did as well. Remember that virtually all of the newer Democrats (2006/2008) are more moderate. Some are pro-life, even more are pro-gun. It was a clever amendment on the R’s part.

    I would be flabbergasted if anything about the gun stuff got out of the House. Pelosi has her shit together and we all know the majority party does whatever it wants in the House. This stuff will all disappear in Conference and I imagine both chambers will pass a clean version of the bill. Or so I hope…

    Comment by Morgan | February 26, 2009


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