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Monday, June 1, 2009

Some Gun Control Friends Voted for National Park Amendment

But it was by accident - so says an article on last Friday's Congressional Quarterly web site.

At least 11 House Democrats (not including freshmen) who have typically sided with gun-control advocates on past votes this time around favored allowing state and local gun laws to take precedence over federal law in national parks.

Those 11 were Reps. Adam Smith of Washington, Frank Pallone Jr. of New Jersey, Ed Perlmutter of Colorado, Joe Courtney of Connecticut, Gregory W. Meeks of New York, Shelley Berkley of Nevada, Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, Hank Johnson of Georgia, Melissa Bean of Illinois, Patrick J. Kennedy of Rhode Island and Diana DeGette of Colorado.

Patrick Kennedy told CQ he did not want the underlying bill (the credit card bill) to be held up but in the House the amendment was voted on separately from the larger bill to give those who wanted the bill but who opposed the amendment (as well as those who opposed the credit card bill but favored the Coburn Amendment) could vote their conscience. Had the Coburn Amendment failed, the bill would have headed back to the Senate, but the final vote wasn’t even close — the House vote on May 20 was 279 in favor of the gun provision and 147 against.

According to CQ, Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign to End Handgun Violence, said he wondered whether House members “weren’t sure what they were voting on.”

Based on Kennedy's comments, I'd say the chances are good that at least some had no clue what was going on.

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