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Thursday, May 14, 2009

Phoenix Anticipation

I am currently in the Chicago airport where I am an hour into a three hour layover before continuing on my journey to the NRA Annual Meeting. This will be a short trip as I have to get back on Saturday to attend my daughters' dance recital so I will be trying to pack an entire weekend of activities into one day.

As an estimated 50,000 people (I think it will be considerably more) converge on the City of Phoenix, there is both good news and an air of uncertainty awaiting the arrivals. As Jim Shepherd reported in yesterday's Shooting Wire, there has been some positive things come out of Washington in the past week. After an initial signal that the Obama Administration was poised to move to reinstate the Clinton Gun Ban, courtesy of the AG Eric Holder, all talk of the administration on the subject has been silenced.

Also last week, the FY2010 Obama Budget retained the Tiahrt Amendments with only minor changes to insure law enforcement gets information it needs from the data. The important point is that the language prohibiting use of the date for frivolous law suits remain. The collective screeching of the anti-rights crowd berating Obama for "breaking his promise" is proof that any talk that their was a caving to the administration by the pro-rights community is an attempt to drive a wedge through the gun community.

On Monday, the pro-rights community won another legal victory in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Court. This is the second consecutive ruling from the court that is making me wonder if it is trying to reform its reputation as the most overturned circuit in the country. The case in questions was Ileto v. Glock, RSR and the ruling says that the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Firearms Act "requires the dismissal" of the long-running. This was another of those cases seeking damages from a manufacturer for crimes committed by a felon with a firearm.

Finally, last week the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Reform and Firearms Modernization Act In was introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). This bill is similar to one that was passed by the House in the 109th Congress in 2006 and brings some much needed reform to the agency.

While all of this is good news, the anti-rights crowd aided by the "drive-by" media is still pushing gun control in the face of a strong public head wind. Poll after poll in recent weeks has shown weakening public support for stricter regulation of firearms but that has not stopped the likes of Representative Carolyn McCarthy and others who have vowed to reintroduce a bill banning so-called "assault weapons."

And that is where the uncertainty I mentioned comes in. Gun owners cannot for a minute begin to become complacent by the inaction of the Obama Administration to push an agenda that most everyone knows it favors. I am in full agreement with National Review Online's Jim Geraghty when he said last week on Cam and Company there is no way that Obama goes into the 2010 elections without at least throwing some kind of bone to the anti-rights crowd. And since he does not want it to be fresh in the memory of the (gun) voters, it is likely to happen sometime after this fall rather than in the fall of 2010.

So, there is a lot to celebrate as we arrive in Phoenix, but there is much of which we should also beware.

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