Sen. Ensign on the D.C. Gun Law Amendment

Republican Senator John Ensign of Nevada writes in the Washington Post defending his amendment to the bill to give D.C. a voting representative in Congress, an amendment that would also overturn the District's current gun regulations. That amendment has the bill currently held up in the House, after passing the Senate:

A sizable majority of the Senate, both Democrats and Republicans, agreed that D.C. residents' constitutional rights were being violated by the city government. Democratic leaders in the House know that a strong majority in their own chamber, a majority composed of Republicans and pro-gun, moderate Democrats, reflects the overwhelming sentiment in our nation that unreasonable gun control measures are ineffective at combating crime and infringe on residents' rights. This strong sentiment led me to sponsor the amendment, and it is why I believe House Democrats need to allow a vote....

Contrary to the impression left by some on these pages, my amendment will not turn the District into the Wild West of the East Coast. It would apply federal gun control law to the city. It would prohibit anyone from carrying any firearm in public without a permit; would require residents to submit to an FBI background check when they purchase a firearm; and would apply federal restrictions regarding, among other things, mental health issues, felony convictions, immigration status and age. My amendment upholds the court's ruling while allowing reasonable regulations consistent with the constitutional right guaranteed by the Second Amendment. Those who seek to mischaracterize this amendment are only spreading fear. 

For more on D.C.'s history of gun control and the historical Supreme Court case that overturned their old gun laws, see my book Gun Control on Trial.

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  • ||

    So the way to fix the uncostitutional denial of DC residents right to bear arms we need to pass an unconstitutional law giving the district a voting representative in congress?

    Pure fucking genius from the honorable dumbfuck from Nevada. This is the best the GOP can offer in the way of principled legislation? Guess why I stopped voting for you dipshits if there is a third party of almost any stripe on the ballot.

    As a retired Master Chief I have to add that this is the kind of cluelessness I've come to expect from an Ensign.

  • ||

    Pure fucking genius from the honorable dumbfuck from Nevada.

    Actually, it is. When SCOTUS strikes the unconstitutional voting representative, the amendment expanding gun rights will remain on the books.

    Its a win/win!

  • Paul||

    As a retired Master Chief

    You still got your coffee mug?

  • ||

    Yep. Still use it too. The fuckers are well designed and double as a deadly blunt instrument.

  • JB||

    DC is run by the tards, for the tards.

    I wish they would get things right and recognize the Bill of Rights for real individuals like myself who actually set foot in the hell-hole once in awhile.

    As for most of the detritus that lives there, especially the imported liberal 'icarealot' type, I care not a whit.

  • Other Matt||

    Yep. Still use it too. The fuckers are well designed and double as a deadly blunt instrument.

    Careful, DC will subject you to "Common Sense" regulation for even thinking that way.

    As for most of the detritus that lives there, especially the imported liberal 'icarealot' type, I care not a whit.

    If they let themselves drown in their own filth, it wouldn't bother me. However, it's a pain in the ass when the quickest way for me to get from my house to my firearms guru's place is through DC, and they tend to ignore federal safe passage laws.

  • Mad Max||

    'When SCOTUS strikes the unconstitutional voting representative, the amendment expanding gun rights will remain on the books.'

    This assumes that the Supremes (or whichever federal court deals with the case) won't dismiss the case as a 'political question.' It's chancy whether or not the federal courts will entertain lawsuits about the composition of the House of Representatives. It comes down to whether the judges think it's important enough to intervene.

  • LarryA||

    So the way to fix the unconstitutional denial of DC residents right to bear arms we need to pass an unconstitutional law giving the district a voting representative in congress? Pure fucking genius from the honorable dumbfuck from Nevada.

    Not sure why you're mad at Sen. Ensign. Democrats proposed the bill. He can't unpropose it, and given the Democrat majority in both houses it was almost certain to pass. Adding a skunk amendment is the most effective tactic he has for:
    1. Reducing the chance that the legislation will pass
    2. Underlining the pro-gun majority in the Senate and the House
    3. Getting something good out of the process if the bill passes.

    Note that killing this amendment has to be a top priority for the gun control crowd. Letting it pass, then watching the D.C. crime rate drop would really suck for them.

  • B||

    "Pure fucking genius from the honorable dumbfuck from Nevada."

    Uh, the bill was going to pass no matter what he did, so how does that make him a dumb fuck because he made a bad bill a little bit better?

  • ||

    The Republicans should do this just to continually fuck with the Democrats. It would be sheer hilarity.

  • ||

    J sub D: what is your suggestion to resolve the matter in a constitutional way then? Is it constitutional to tax 600,000 residents yearly without representation in Congress?

    You know, it would be helpful if the non-D.C. residents would at least research the history or perhaps speak to a resident before commenting on the issue of the ongoing tyranny here in the District. As a D.C. resident, I am forced to pay Federal taxes, yet I get no say in where those tax dollars go. I have no representation in Congress. They are essentially pimping all 600,000 residents of the city. We have National Guardsmen that we send to fight for democracy in Iraq and they come home to D.C. where they don't even have democracy. You know, England used to tax the colonies without representation...how did that work out again? It is not fair to the residents and you can not have it both ways. Either give the citizens representation or stop taxing us. I know this article is about the gun law amendment but this taxation issue is at the core. To compound the taxation tyranny we face as District residents, we also face the all powerful and all knowing D.C. Council and Police Chief who in their infinite wisdom decided it was a good idea to tell us which guns were okay to possess. I believe the Constitution says I have the right to bear arms, not "except for this one or that one, no two tone or only 10 round magazines". Criminals have guns, despite any laws you have, all they are doing is preventing law abiding citizens from defending themselves.

  • Xaq Fixx||

    I had the opportunity to Interview Dick Heller about his battle all the way to the supreme court this weekend for the Bureaucrash Podcrash, you can listen here: http://bureaucrash.com/2009/03/16/podcrash-027-dick-heller-and-the-second-amendment/

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