Democrats controlled both houses of Congress and the White House ten short years ago. But they wouldn’t or couldn’t make any progress on one of their most dearly-held policy goals: passing gun control legislation to roll back civilian gun ownership and limit Second Amendment rights.
But in the aftermath of Las Vegas and Parkland, one of the primary issues far left Dems ran on in the 2018 midterms was gun control…wait, no, “gun violence prevention.” No, that’s not it, it’s “gun safety” right?
Whatever the euphemism du jour they’re using, House Democrats seem convinced they have a mandate to do something.
“Since the shooting at Sandy Hook, the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force has been fighting for a chance to pass legislation that will help save lives,” (task force chairman Rep. Mike) Thompson said in a statement. “Finally, with our new majority that ran on helping to prevent gun violence, we will introduce a bipartisan, universal background checks bill. We will hold hearings, we will have a vote, and this legislation will finally pass the House.”
Today, House Democrats will try to make good on that promise. Why today? Because it’s the eighth anniversary of the Giffords shooting.
“I am thrilled that for the first time in decades, the United StatesHouse of Representatives will no longer sit silent as our nation reels from the growing gun violence epidemic,” the former Democratic congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords said in a statement. The bill will be introduced on the eighth anniversary of the Tucson, Arizona, mass shooting that targeted one of Giffords’ constituent meetings. Giffords, who survived being shot in the head in an attack that left six people dead, now leads one of the country’s leading gun control groups.
Well, it’s at least refreshing that the UK’s Guardian referred to Giffords’ anti-gun org for what it is.
So Speaker Pelosi will, with great fanfare, ruffles and flourishes, announce her effort at outlawing private gun sales today.
Does it matter to the speaker that one of the nation’s most dedicated anti-gun advocates, UC-Davis’s Garen Wintemute, recently published the results of a decade-long study demonstrating that universal background checks are completely ineffective in preventing gun violence and suicides?” No. Not at all.
Will House Democrats acknowledge that gun-related crime in the US is at historic lows and violent crime and murder rates fell in America’s 30 largest cities between 2017 and 2018? Don’t bother them with details.
Pelosi and her lockstep majority will portray an America in the midst of a “gun violence” epidemic, a rash of mass shootings, murder and mayhem that presents a clear and present danger to our way of life. Hence, their justification for rolling back your gun rights, one bill at a time.
They’re almost sure to have also lined up a few GOP supporters for their 2A-impinging efforts. They’ll no doubt have a some of the usual blue state Republican suspects like New York’s Peter King on hand to nod with grave looks of concern on their faces while they provide the fig leaf of bipartisanship.
The bill’s a sure bet for passage in the House as virtually no Democrats who might oppose it — if there actually are any — would dare buck the speaker or their port-leaning base by voting no on gun control. Its prospects in the Senate are considerably more dim. Supporters there would need to cobble together 60 votes and even with a few squishes on the GOP side, they’re not likely to get that done.
Unless, of course, Dems manage to attach the background check bill to a continuing resolution. In that case, Republicans may face the choice of voting for the bill or allowing the government to run out of
borrowing authority money. If that happens, things could get interesting.