The bill's namesake, Blair Holt was by all accounts a brave young man who was murdered at age 16 in Chicago in 2007 while protecting a girl on a public bus from another young man trying to shoot her. The killer, Michael Pace, also 16 in 2007, apparently got the gun from yet another minor, Kevin Jones , who was only 15 in 2007.
Note that both of the perps were under 21. Neither had any legal right in any state to own a handgun, let alone to carry one legally. There is no place in the United States where anyone could have legally sold or loaned a gun to either of those kids. Bizarrely these facts are ignored in H.R. 45's call for NEW laws, when the existing laws are either unenforced or unenforceable.
Illinois, especially Chicago, already has some of the strictest gun laws in the country, which you would think would be prima facie evidence that gun control laws will be ignored by criminals and only put the law-abiding at a disadvantage. (I haven't been able to find a source about where Kevin Jones got the murder weapon, but I'd lay money that it wasn't from a gun dealer, a pawn shop, or non-licensed seller (non-dealer) at a gun show. If you have any info on where Jones got his gun please post it here, but chances are the gun was from a robbery, which according to sources in the know, is also the main source for illegal guns on the streets of Portland.)
My guess is that Rep Rush is a pretty smart man, and as such knows all this. But doesn't care. It's easier to use an unfortunate victim to pass through a gun control bill he would have proposed anyway. And H.R. 45 is a veritable Christmas tree of anti-gun legislation, most of which is already in place in Illinois, and none of which would have saved Blair Holt.
Here's a sampling.
Sec 101 - Requiring a national license to own a handgun or semiautomatic firearm:
"It shall be unlawful for any person other than a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to possess a qualifying firearm on or after the applicable date, unless that person has been issued a firearm license."
A qualifying firearm is defined earlier in the bill as "any handgun; or any semiautomatic firearm that can accept any detachable ammunition feeding device."
Sec 102 - Application Requirements:
". . . a certification by the applicant that the applicant will keep any firearm owned by the applicant safely stored and out of the possession of persons who have not attained 18 years of age. . ."
Sec 201 - Banning any transfer of a firearm other than via a licensed dealer:
"It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, deliver, or otherwise transfer a qualifying firearm to, or for, any person who is not a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector, or to receive a qualifying firearm from a person who is not a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector, unless, at the time and place of the transfer or receipt."
The bill goes on in like fashion. Regarding Sec 102--the order that you keep your firearm stored in your home and sign a paper swearing you'll do so--it doesn't appear that Rep. Rush believes that precedent was set by the Heller decision, which reads:
. . . Held: . . . 3. The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to self-defense) violate the second Amendment. The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense. Under any of the standards of scrutiny the Court has applied to enumerated constitutional rights, this of self, family, and property is most acute—would fail constitutional muster. Similarly, the requirement that any lawful firearm in the home be disassembled or bound by a trigger lock makes it impossible for citizens to use arms for the core lawful purpose of self-defense and is hence unconstitutional . . .
Sorry, Rep. Rush, but this bill ain't happening; SCOTUS will strike it down even if it does pass. But I'm pretty sure you knew that already. At this point H.R. 45 appears to have no co-sponsors; I hope that's as good a sign as it appears, and that Congress will not waste time with bills that violate the Constitution, reinforce the stereotype of "gun grabbers" on the Hill, and which would have no positive impact on crime.
Surely the 111 Congress can do better?