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Friday, June 5, 2015

House GOP Uses Power of the Purse to Address Obama Gun Restrictions

The Hill reports this morning that House Republicans did as promised and attached multiple amendments to HR2578, the Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bill, to stop Obama's regulatory end run around Congress to impose restrictions on our firearms freedom.  From The Hill article:
Under the measure, the ATF would be prohibited from banning certain forms of armor-piercing ammunition or blocking the importation of military-style shotguns. Another provision would block federal agents from creating what critics say is a gun registry.

Critics of the administrations efforts to impose new federal firearm restrictions see the GOP Congress’s power of purse as their best chance to block new rules.

“We need to stop the Obama administration from making end-run around Congress on gun control,” National Rifle Association spokeswoman Jennifer Baker said.

The bill, approved in the House by a 242-183 tally, would prohibit the Justice Department from using any of the money to enforce certain gun regulations.

Among them is the ATF’s proposed — and later withdrawn — ban on certain forms of armor-piercing ammunition used in AR-15 rifles. Gun control advocates cheered the agency for moving forward with the rule in February.
Obama previously threatened a veto of the House version of the bill emerges from the Senate and Democrat New Yok Congressman echoed that threat:
But Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) said the move was irresponsible, since it could derail the bill in the Senate, imperiling all Justice Department programs.

“Once again, the Republicans are governing dangerously by offering a poison pill amendment that jeopardizes the safety of our law enforcement and first responders,” Israel said. “Congress should be passing common-sense gun safety laws to save lives and keep our men and women in uniform safe — not caving to the reckless demands of the gun lobby.”
It is very possible that many if not most of the amendments will indeed emerge from the Senate with the pro-rights majority currently in place.  While Republicans have been loathe to use their power of the purse in other areas, it appears that a solid number of them are ready to do just that on the issue of Second Amendment rights.

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