“By a surprisingly strong vote,” ctmirror.org reports, “the House of Representatives overcame tenacious opposition from conservatives Wednesday night to pass a bill requiring gun owners to surrender their firearms within 24 hours of being served with a temporary restraining order in domestic violence cases.” And so Connecticut gun owners are set to lose their Sixth Amendment right to confront their accusers. Not to mention the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment right to due process. Check out what a Republican — one of 21 who voted for the bill — had to say about that . . .
“It’s a small price to pay for the precious lives we might save,” said Rep. Mitch Bolinsky, R-Newtown.
Yup, a Republican. In other words, the court will be removing Constitution State residents’ civil rights with no guaranteed benefit. At least one other CT Republican understands the concept:
Republicans Rob C. Sampson of Wolcott and Doug Dubitsky of Chaplin led the opposition, arguing against singling out firearms among other weapons and complaining that even temporary confiscation was a violation of due process and Second Amendment rights.
“We’re decimating the rights of our citizens,” Sampson said.
Needless to say, the Nutmeg State Dems were not impressed.
Rep. William Tong, D-Stamford, co-chair of the Judiciary Committee, said case law was well-established: There is a legal right to a hearing to contest a permanent court order, not a temporary one that lasts no more than two weeks. At least 20 other states have similar laws, including one of the bastions of gun rights: Texas.
“There are some who would say that their Second Amendment rights are being taken away, but the truth is the gun in fact can always be returned later to the rightful owner,” Tong said. “What can’t be returned, however, is the life that has been taken from a victim. The bullet that injures or kills someone cannot be unfired.”
And now, the facts: “Connecticut averaged 14 intimate-partner homicides a year from 2000 to 2014, with guns used in 39 percent of those 188 homicides.” (Two of which occurred before a full restraining order as chronicled by The Trace, ‘natch. Oh wait. The
Murders went down in Virginia and Oklahoma. Carry on.)
So a relatively small problem — that may better have been addresses by making it easier for victims of domestic abuse to arm themselves — requires the degradation of civil rights. Who knew? Politicians who want to be seen to be doing something.