Thursday, February 26, 2009

Pelosi Shoots Down Assault Weapons Ban

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has gotten into the pro-2nd Amendment game by shooting down the prospect of renewing the so-called Assault Weapons ban. This comes after recent statements by AG Eric Holder (see next post) saying the administration would attempt to reinstate the ban.

Pelosi said Holder had not consulted with her before issuing his comments. She added her own opinion on what to do:

"On that score, I think we need to enforce the laws we have right now," Pelosi said. "I think it's clear the Bush administration didn’t do that."

See complete references online on The Hill.

Score one for the Speaker! This shows Nancy Pelosi, whatever her personal feelings, "gets it" and understands that the new Democratic-controlled Congress will not support further restrictions on our 2nd Amendment rights.

While Eric Holder's anti-2nd Amendment positions are well-known, you also have to wonder how much he consulted with his boss before his recent statements. My guess is, not much.

Concerning Holder's actual statement, here it is:

"Holder said that putting the ban back in place would not only be a positive move by the United States, it would help cut down on the flow of guns going across the border into Mexico, which is struggling with heavy violence among drug cartels along the border."

Um, sorry, but if "assault weapons" are coming into Mexico from the U.S., they're passing into the L.A. harbor on Chinese merchant ships first. Those ships can dock anywhere north or south of the border. And considering Mexican drug gangs now employ squads of former Mexican special forces officers as assassins, no change in U.S. law is going to impact the availability of firearms for Mexican mobsters. However, given Holder's conversations with Mexican officials on the issue, it is important that no treaties with Mexico are allowed to serve as backdoor routes to gun control.

But again--nice one, Pelosi!


Anonymous said...

Please, do not pander to Nancy Pelosi. She is absolutely NOT a friend of gun owners. When and if, the heat of this terrible economy ends, that's when the SHTF. She is not a friend and she never will be. Do not be blinded by you love of politicians regardless of your political beliefs.

Zak Johnson said...

I never said Pelosi was a "friend of gun owners." But in politics if I only agree with you 1% of the time, you can bet I'm going to collaborate with you on that 1% and thank you for your help. That's how folks like Orrin Hatch and Ted Kennedy manage to meet together civilly and get things done, unlike more rigid members of Congress we could both name.

What I will say is that I think Nancy Pelosi has done a good job as speaker taking the pulse of the Democratic House on the assault ban issue and realizes--again, whatever her personal feelings--that the support isn't there and that a fight over reinstating the AWB would bring the current momentum to a stand-still. I bet President Obama recognizes the same reality, and ten will get you twenty that Mr. Holder got an unpleasant phone call from his boss today.

But yes, you and I agree--staying vigilant is essential.

Guy Newcomer said...

While Nancy Pelosi is NOT a friend of Gun Control, one thing we can do is continue to remind ALL our elected officials that there are Progressive voters and activists who are 2nd Amendment defenders as well.

Zak is right, we must work with our opponents when common ground occurs. Part of that is letting them know who you are, that you're watching, and that you're pleased with whatever they did. I sent an email to the Speaker, so it can be read and filed by her staff in the appropriate spot, and one more check goes in the column of "Constituent, Pro-Gun."

Feel free to copy and modify the text of my letter if you want to do the same:

Dear Madam Speaker,

I want to thank you for your response to Eric Holder's comment regarding renewing the AWB.

I am an ardent democrat, but I believe my 2nd amendment rights, finally affirmed by DC v. Heller, are on par in importance with my 1st, 3rd, 4th, and 5th.

For me, this is not about hunting or self defense. It's about basic civil rights. It's a right provided to me by our founders, and just as I wouldn't give up my Freedom of Expression, I won't give up my Right to Bear Arms.

It has been deeply frustrating to watch misguided, badly written, uselessly restrictive bills like the AWB receive so much attention when much better laws, already in place, linger unenforced.

Programs like ChildSafe, providing education, outreach, and free child-safe gun locks, are far more valuable and effective at actually preventing firearm-related tragedies than banning 19 guns mostly because they look scary (the AWB).

Gun Rights is a powerful voting issue for me, along with education, health care, and the more normal parts of our platform. Please use your knowledge and political acumen to prevent the re-emergence of this wedge issue that might impede the good work we can complete on gun safety, job creation, universal health care, and other patriotic objectives.

Thank you for your time.
Guy Newcomer

Zak Johnson said...

Thanks for the letter, Guy. I agree with you on the importance of writing civil but clear letters like your to our legislators.

C. Michael Arnold said...

Pelosi's wonderful comment just goes to show that right-wing radio can't fit her perfectly into their hyperbolic mold. Thank goodness this is still a representative democracy.

brian r said...

Wow! I didn't see that one coming. Thank you Palosi. I have never been a fan, but this is definitely a step in the correct direction.