Yesterday’s largely party-line vote by the House Judiciary Committee on H.R. 822, the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, clearly demonstrates that Democrats remain the party that clings to the notion that gun ownership is a privilege and that a citizen’s right of self-defense ends at state lines.
Even after two Supreme Court rulings – the most recent being the Bellevue-based Second Amendment Foundation’s case of McDonald v. City of Chicago that saw the Second Amendment incorporated to the states – Democrats don’t get it. The same might be said for gun owners who consistently vote Democrat under the delusion that somehow their gun rights will remain safe even with that party in control.
Alan Gottlieb and this writer made that abundantly clear in our 2008 collaboration These Dogs Don’t Hunt: The Democrats’ War on Guns.
Perhaps there is no better current example than Madison, WI Mayor Paul Soglin, a liberal Democrat now in his third mayoral stint (he served twice before and when anti-gun Democrat Gov. Jim Doyle announced he would not seek a third term, Soglin warned party officials that if they didn’t find a viable replacement candidate, he would campaign for the job) who has just made it pretty clear in the pages of the Madison Capital Times that he doesn’t care for the state’s new concealed carry law, which takes effect next week. (Our thanks to NRA’s always-reliable Richard Wahl for digging this one out!)
Indeed, Soglin is going out of his way to be a horse’s pa…er, make that “devoted public servant” by…well, let’s let the newspaper explain it:
“While I think this (state) legislation is bad public policy, the city of Madison must respond as best it can under the limitations set by the Legislature,” says the mayor. “It is my responsibility to make sure that city employees and residents are comfortable and can feel safe in city buildings. All city buildings will be posted with appropriate notices, indicating that it is illegal to carry weapons in city buildings. This will include the city’s bus shelters and transfer points, and park shelters.”
Soglin has also reminded private business owners, homeowners, and apartment and condominium dwellers that they have the right to bar firearms if they post notices like those that will be displayed on city facilities.
The mayor might like to see the concealed carry law repealed. But he is not making a big deal about that. Rather, he is informing Madisonians about how they can respond to it. And he is reminding them of the standards that will apply to notice signs — they must be at least 5 inches by 7 inches and indicate that weapons are prohibited on a property. Madison has even made signs available for purchase or download from the city website…
Yesterday, this column reported the results of the latest Gallup annual Crime poll, which, among other things, shows that Democrats still more strongly favor restrictive gun laws than independents or Republicans. That poll showed more than twice as many Democrats than Republicans favoring stricter laws covering the sale of firearms, and nearly double the number of independents (64%-37%). Does this put Democrats out of that “mainstream” which they are so fond of claiming as their own territory?
When it comes to favoring a ban on handguns, again more than twice as many Democrats than Republicans (37% to 16%) and nearly half-again more than Independents (37%-23%) would abolish private handgun ownership. One might say there has been “progress” among the self-appointed “Progressives” in this regard, because in 1991, 54% of those identifying themselves as Democrats favored a handgun ban, so their support for the notion has waned 17 percent.
Only one Republican, Rep. Dan Lungren, the former California attorney general, voted against the Reciprocity Act Wednesday. His opposition is at least more understandable, and perhaps reasonable, than the Democrats’. Lungren, according to The Hill:
“…is also concerned that residents of states with strict conceal-and-carry requirements would go to other states with less stringent requirements to obtain a permit.
“I wanted to offer an amendment that the person be a resident of the state in order for the reciprocity imposed by federal law — in other words, a resident of the state that granted the permit,” Lungren said, noting that his concerns were not adequately addressed in committee.”
Democrats on the committee, however, agrued that the adoption of this measure is a slap at states’ rights.
Say, isn’t that the same argument Southern Democrats used when they voted for secession back in 1860-61 because they didn’t want that no-good Republican Abe Lincoln telling them they had to do away with slavery?
If Democrats are so enamored with states’ rights, why did they pass the national Brady Law back in 1993? Why did they adopt the ten-year national ban on semiautomatic sport-utility rifles in 1994? Why did they pass “Obamacare,” which is now being challenged by several state attorneys general (with Democrats including Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire railing against that lawsuit)?
Despite all campaign rhetoric to the contrary, Democrats are not entirely keen on protecting individual gun rights. Their polling responses, their actions and the actions of their leaders, speak far louder than their pandering election-year “support” of the Second Amendment, which Americans will begin hearing shortly.
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SECOND AMENDMENT FOUNDATION
‘Winning Firearms Freedom One Lawsuit at a Time’
CITIZENS COMMITTEE FOR THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS
America Fights Back: Armed Self-Defense in a Violent Age
These Dogs Don’t Hunt: The Democrats’ War on Guns
Assault on Weapons: The Campaign to Eliminate Your Guns
Washington State Gun Rights and Responsibilities