USCCA President on Terror and the Gun Debate

U.S. Concealed Carry Association President: “London Terror Attacks SHOULD Spark Gun Debate”
Asks Why National Media Isn’t Focusing On Failed Anti-Gun Laws in Europe, Elsewhere

Tim Schmidt, President & Founder of the U.S. Concealed Carry Association, Available for Commentary

In the aftermath of this past weekend’s terrorist attacks in London, some in the national media and anti-Second Amendment community criticized President Donald Trump for rightly observing that they did not immediately spark a renewed debate over gun control because the attackers did not use guns. But Tim Schmidt, President & Founder of the U.S. Concealed Carry Association, said today that the President’s observation was the correct one and that the recent terrorist attacks in London, Paris and elsewhere SHOULD bring the issue of failed gun control laws to the forefront including the inability of citizens in many countries to adequately protect themselves. Read more

NSSF Warns Retailers of Potential Brady Campaign “Visits”

Attention Retailers:
Brady Campaign May Approach You

It has been brought to our attention that individuals working directly for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence may be seeking to visit FFLs to engage with owners or employees in order to better understand the “Gun Culture.” NSSF strongly advises that if you or your employees are approached in person, by phone, over email or via social media that you decline to participate in any fact-finding visit or discussion.

The Brady Campaign on its website states: “Brady is leading the fight to change the gun industry and force it to reform by holding gun companies accountable to victims in the courts, and staging protests to challenge ‘bad apple’ gun dealers at their doorsteps.”

Make no mistake, no matter how friendly the approach, the Brady Campaign does not have your best interests in mind. To the contrary, the campaign has a long history of misstating facts, misleading the public, lobbying policy makers to enact punishing legislation and filing baseless lawsuits against members of our industry. You will not be able to affect the Brady Campaign’s course of action or reach any real mutual agreement. Anything you say could be used against your business and the industry as a whole. Read more

CCRKBA: UK Firearms, Knife Restrictions Ineffective According to Scotland Yard

BELLEVUE, WA – A new report from Scotland Yard reveals that a “significant spike in knife and gun offenses” has occurred in the United Kingdom, throwing cold water on the notion that restrictive British gun and knife laws have made that nation safer, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

According to Scotland Yard, there has been a 42 percent increase in so-called “gun violence” and a 24 percent rise in “knife offenses” during the 2016-2017 financial year.

“All the rhetoric we’ve heard over the years about how the British solved their crime problem by having law-abiding citizens turn in their guns, and adopting strict knife and gun control has suddenly turned out to be wishful thinking, if not simply wrong,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “Like gun control efforts anywhere, the Brits have disarmed the wrong people. Read more

2nd Amendment Groups To Ask SCOTUS to Review Decision on California’s Waiting Period Laws

SAN FRANCISCO – On April 4, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals denied a petition for rehearing or rehearing en banc (by the “full court”) in the case of Jeff Silvester, et al. v. Calif. Attorney General Xavier Becerra (formerly captioned Silvester v. Kamala Harris), a federal Second Amendment lawsuit challenging the State of California’s irrational waiting period laws imposed on law-abiding existing gun owners and people licensed to carry handguns in public by their sheriff or police chief.

In response to the court’s order, The Calguns Foundation has issued the following statement:

In its decision to ignore the trial court’s Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law as well as longstanding principles of appellate review, and now in its refusal to correct the 3-judge panel decision’s manifest errors in all regards, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has made it crystal clear that it has no intention of following the Supreme Court’s precedent and protecting Second Amendment rights from unconstitutional, burdensome, and irrational laws. Read more

National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Bill Introduced in Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) has introduced the NSSF-supported Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (S.446), a companion to the House of Representatives bipartisan bill introduced by U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.). The proposed legislation, with 30 co-sponsors, would compel states to recognize concealed carry permits issued from other states that have concealed carry laws within their own borders – much in the same way a driver’s license is recognized. The bill aims to eliminate the confusion of varying state-by-state laws and provide protection for Second Amendment rights for permit holders.

“This bill strengthens both the constitutional right of law-abiding citizens to protect themselves and the power of states to implement laws best-suited for the folks who live there,” Sen. Cornyn said. “This legislation is an important affirmation of our Second Amendment rights and has been a top priority of law-abiding gun owners in Texas for a long time.” Read more

Court Rules for Plaintiffs in First Amendment Case Challenging Takedown of Political Speech Protesting New Gun Laws

SACRAMENTO, CA and FRESNO, CA — Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, issued an order granting plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction in a First Amendment civil rights lawsuit challenging a California statute that broadly restricts the Internet publication of the home address or telephone number of any “elected or appointed official.” The case, captioned Doe Publius and Derek Hoskins v. California Legislative Counsel Diane Boyer-Vine, is supported by civil rights advocacy organization Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC). Read more

Congress Acts on Bad Social Security Measure

By Jim Shepherd

After the Senate voted 57-43 yesterday to strike down a Social Security regulation that would have required the Social Security Administration to report anyone who received disability benefits and had a wide range of medical conditions – from serious mental issues to sleeping and eating disorders- mainstream headlines quickly read “Senate Restores Right of Mentally Ill to Purchase Guns”.

It’s a certain sign of just how far the chasm is between fact and objectivity when it comes to supposedly “unbiased” news reports. The measure wasn’t a great piece of legislation artfully crafted to address a glaring need in the existing system. It was a slap-dash piece of legislation. In fact, Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, said it was filled with “vague characteristics that do not fit into the federal mentally defective standard” . Those same “vague characteristics” would have lumped people with sleeping disorders into a group of considerably more serious mental issues that would have required the Social Security Administration to notify the FBI of those conditions- so they could be entered into the FBI’s NICS background check system.

In short, it would have guaranteed those people would be denied if they tried to purchase a gun if their conditions led them to have third-party involvement in the management of their affairs.

As Grassley said “If a specific individual is likely to be violent due to the nature of their mental illness, then the government should have to prove it.”
I know it’s not popular with anti-gun folks, but the idea of “innocent until proven guilty” is woven pretty tightly into our national fabric. Read more

Trump Nominates Gorsuch to Supreme Court

Last evening, President Donald Trump nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch, 49, an appellate judge from Colorado to fill the United States Supreme Court seat left vacant since the unexpected death of Justice Antonin Scalia almost a year ago. President Trump called Gorsuch’s nomination his fulfillment of a promise to voters who told him a justice who would “interpret them (the laws) as they are written was the single most important issue for them when they voted for me as president.”

Selected from a list of 20 potential judges compiled during the campaign. Gorsuch’s opinions on religious liberty and his feelings on the separation of powers were seen as key in his selection over Judge Thomas Hardiman. With an Ivy League pedigree- Columbia and Harvard- and a doctorate in legal philosophy from Oxford, Gorsuch is young enough that he could carry on the Trump legacy long after the President leaves office, as well as restoring the conservative/liberal balance of the Supreme Court.

His confirmation, however, will be hotly contested, with Democrats stung over the Republican’s blocking of Obama nominee Merrick Garland, spoiling for a fight. No word -yet- on whether Senate Republicans will use the so-called “nuclear option” of reducing the vote on Grouch to a simple majority rather than a 60-vote threshold should Democrats mount a serious effort to stymie the confirmation process. Gorsuch photo from 10th Circuit Court of Appeals with permission.

CCRKBA Slams Seattle Mayor for Hypocrisy

BELLEVUE, WA – The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is condemning Seattle Mayor Ed Murray for “monumental hypocrisy” after he declared that the City of Seattle will fight a new Trump administration directive on so-called “sanctuary cities” by going to court to “insure…that the United States Constitution is not violated.”

“When it comes to violating the Constitution, Ed Murray has expert experience,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “This is the guy who was publicly embarrassed in 2013 when, as a state senator, he sponsored a gun ban bill that would have allowed warrantless searches of gun owners’ homes by sheriff’s deputies. After that was reported, Murray and his co-sponsors scrambled to remove that language from the bill, but it still failed.”

Gottlieb accused Murray of “trotting out the Constitution only when he can use it for a political prop.”

“Murray would eviscerate the Second Amendment,” Gottlieb said. “He signed a gun violence tax into law that penalizes law-abiding firearms owners and amounts to a poll tax. He has a track record of supporting gun control, including an attempt to ban an entire class of firearms.” Read more

Promising Consequences of the Presidential Election

By Glen Wunderlich

During a meeting with congressional Republicans immediately following his inauguration in 2009, President Obama felt compelled to remind them that “elections have consequences” and gleefully pronounced, “I won.”  With his autocratic policies on parade since then, Americans across the country had had enough, and with their collective voice, rebuked his “change” and any “hope” of more of the same.

No two ways about it, Republicans and President-elect Trump have a heaping helping on their plates, but they are poised to promulgate sportsmen-friendly regulations and Constitutional guarantees relative to the Second Amendment.  Here are a few to watch.

Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act – A group of U.S. Representatives, led by Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY), launched the Congressional Second Amendment Caucus.  “The recent election results present us with a new opportunity to advance pro-gun legislation and reverse the erosion of the Second Amendment that’s occurred over the last few decades. I look forward to working with the new President and this determined group of conservatives to promote a pro-gun agenda,” Massie stated.

U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC) introduced the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (H.R. 38) on the first day of the 115th Congress. The proposed legislation, with 63 co-sponsors, would compel states to recognize concealed carry permits issued from other states that have concealed carry laws within their own borders – much in the same way a driver’s license is recognized. The bill aims to eliminate the confusion of varying state-by-state laws and provide protection for Second Amendment rights for permit holders.

In addition to interstate recognition of concealed carry permits, the bill would also allow concealed carry in the National Park System, National Wildlife Refuge System, and on lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management, Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation, as well as provide greater legal protections in both civil and criminal cases for permit holders.

Hearing Protection Act – The 2015 introduction of the Hearing Protection Act (HPA) by Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) would have removed suppressors from the purview of the National Firearms Act (NFA), replacing the antiquated federal transfer process with an instantaneous NICS background check and eliminating the onerous $200 tax. The HPA also included a provision to refund the $200 transfer tax to applicants who would have purchased suppressors after October 22, 2015.

Typically, suppressors reduce the noise of gunshots by 20 – 35 decibels (dB), similar to sound reduction of earplugs or earmuffs. Additionally, suppressors also mitigate noise complaints from people who live near shooting ranges and hunting lands.  It’s time to put this common-sense gun reform back on the table.

Government Savings Litigation Act – Americans were promised transparency in government, and unfortunately the promise fell as flat as roadkill.  In testimony before a Congressional committee, Boone and Crockett Club president emeritus Lowell E. Baier told committee members that H.R. 1996, the Government Savings Litigation Act, would help America’s fish, wildlife and natural resources agencies do their jobs.

In recent years, animal rights and environmental advocacy groups began using lawsuits to protest lawful decisions they oppose. The groups use the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) to recoup their legal costs. The most frequent abuses include suing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies on minor procedural decisions, then collecting huge settlements and EAJA reimbursements.

These private groups are collecting taxpayer dollars and consuming agency resources that could have gone toward wildlife management and conservation programs.  The trouble is even deeper, because there is purposely no accounting for who gets paid and how much.

Baier said, “The Congressional Research Service in 2009 determined that EAJA was an anomaly in this regard. That’s a glaring privilege for nonprofit groups that is the antithesis of equality and fairness.”

Federal oversight and accounting of EAJA payouts are virtually absent; total costs are unknown. One attorney tracking the issue estimates 12 animal rights and environmental advocacy groups alone filed over 3,300 lawsuits and recovered more than $37 million in EAJA funds over the past decade. Boone and Crockett research shows EAJA actual costs exceeding $50 million per year from litigation by the top 20 environmental litigants.

H.R. 1996 would have required reporting exact costs, but Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) made sure it never made it to the senate floor.

These initiatives may seem like small potatoes, but a million here and a million there, and pretty soon we’re talking real money.  Our money.

Buckle up, sportsmen and women and enjoy the ride!

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