Like so many other big government entities, the city of Indianapolis, which has had nothing but Democrats in the mayor’s office since the first Eisenhower administration, likes to blame its problems on, well, anyone and everything else but its own elected officials and policies.
Looking to “do something” about the increase in crime that’s affected most big blue cities since the pandemic and the George Floyd Summer of Love™, Mayor Joe Hogsett is now blaming…guns. Last night he got the Democrat-dominated city council to pass a series of gun control measures including an “assault weapons” ban, a ban on gun sales to adults under 21, handgun licensure and more.
The only problem with that is it’s all plainly and willfully illegal and entirely unenforceable.
That’s because the state of Indiana has a preemption law that prevents localities form enacting their own gun control laws that are more restrictive than state’s. That’s a common sense provision a lot of states have that keeps them from becoming unworkable patchworks of varying gun control schemes, making owning and carrying a firearm a legal minefield.
Does anyone in Indy government care that what city government just did is illegal? Apparently not. The stunt legislating has nothing at all to do with actually reducing crime, it’s all about the kabuki politics of demonstrating that you’re doing something while inveighing against those awful Republicans who run the show in the capitol building across town. It seems that actually arresting, prosecuting, and jailing law-breakers hasn’t occurred to anyone in Indy city government.
Mayor Joe Hogsett, who just happens to be running for reelection right now, proclaimed “victory” — or something — after the laws were passed last night.
Here’s how the Indianapolis Star reported it . . .
The plan, announced by Hogsett in May as part of a sweeping response to gun crime, consists of two proposals. One is a slate of aspirational, stricter gun control measures that cannot take effect in Indianapolis unless Indiana’s gun laws change. The other authorizes the city to hire three new federal prosecutors as part of a tougher approach to punishing serious violent crime.
The slate of gun control provisions are, as the paper hilariously put it, only “aspirational” because everyone (including those who voted for it) knows the legislation can’t stand up to legal scrutiny. That doesn’t matter, though. They’ll serve their purpose as a handy campaign prop for the Mayor.
— Mayor Joe Hogsett (@IndyMayorJoe) July 11, 2023
it won’t surprise you to learn that . . .
All five Republican councilors voted against the gun control measures.
“I’m voting against this because I disagree with the toothless language and the policy itself, but also because it likely violates state statute and the state constitution,” Council Minority Leader Brian Mowery said during the council meeting, saying that the Indiana Office of the Attorney General’s opinion is that the proposal violates the state preemption law.
Numerous Democratic councilors made an impassioned plea for the state to pass stricter gun regulation and spoke in support of what many called commonsense gun laws in the proposal.
Once again, more of the same political onanism by more of the same suspects. And so it goes.