WASHINGTON– As the Biden administration steps up it’s war on guns, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz on Saturday questioned the administration about a recent mass purchase of ammunition.
During an interview with Breitbart Radio Gaetz pointed out that during just a three-month span – March 1 to June 1 – the Internal Revenue Service purchased $700,000 worth of ammo.
“The IRS should be people in cubicles with green [eye] shades and calculators,” the Florida Republican said. “They shouldn’t be people with guns and ammo.”
He added that congressional Republicans want answers.
“There is concern that this is part of a broader effort to have any entity in the federal government buy up ammo to reduce the amount of ammunition that is in supply, while at the same time, making it harder to produce ammo,” Gaetz said.
“You cannot fully exercise the complement of your Second Amendment rights if you are unable to acquire ammunition in your own country because your government has reduced the production of that ammunition, and then on the other hand, tried to soak up the supply,” he added.
When asked about red flag laws, Gaetz said he opposed them on the grounds that not only do such laws restrict Second Amendment rights, but also directly oppose the Constitution’s due-process protections and the judicial system’s “adversarial” set-up.
“It is as wrong as wrong can be,” said Gaetz.
SAN FRANCISCO (KTLA) — As the nation debates gun control following two mass shootings in Colorado and Georgia, a California-based federal appeals court decided Wednesday that states may restrict the open carrying of guns without running afoul of the 2nd Amendment.
In a 7-4 decision, an en banc panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a county law in Hawaii that has severely limited permits for open carrying of guns.
“The government may regulate, and even prohibit, in public places — including government buildings, churches, schools, and markets — the open carrying of small arms capable of being concealed, whether they are carried concealed or openly,” Judge Jay Bybee, appointed by President George W. Bush, wrote for the majority.
The decision is likely to help push the Supreme Court to review the issue. Federal appellate courts have handed down conflicting rulings on gun laws that only the high court can resolve.
The Hawaii decision came as President Biden is calling for stricter laws in the wake of two shootings that have killed at least 18 people. States run by Democrats have generally pushed for stronger gun laws, but Republican-dominated Legislatures in many states are trying to weaken them. Fifteen states already allow people to carry concealed guns without a permit, and nine have bills to either allow or expand the practice.
Bybee, writing for the 9th Circuit, said a review of more than 700 years of American and English law showed that government has long had the power to regulate arms in public places.
“We have never assumed that individuals have an unfettered right to carry weapons in public spaces,” Bybee wrote. “Indeed, we can find no general right to carry arms into the public square for self-defense.”
Bybee was joined by another Bush appointee and five Democratic appointees.
The decision allows the continued enforcement of a law on the big island of Hawaii that limits permits for openly carrying guns, other than for hunting, to persons with an urgent need for arms and “engaged in the protection of life and property.”
A man who sought and was denied a permit for open carry for self-protection challenged the law. Evidence during the legal proceedings revealed that the county’s permits had been limited to security guards.
Wednesday’s decision overturned a 2-1 ruling in the same case a year ago by a 9th Circuit panel.
Judge Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain, writing the lead dissent Wednesday, called the majority decision “unprecedented” and “extreme.”
“At its core,” wrote O’Scannlain, a Reagan appointee who was joined by other Republican appointees, “the 2nd Amendment protects the ordinary, law-abiding citizen’s right to carry a handgun openly for purposes of self-defense outside the home. Despite an exhaustive historical account, the majority has unearthed nothing to disturb this conclusion.”
A gun control group praised Wednesday’s ruling and noted that the Supreme Court would consider this week whether to review a similar case out of New York.
“Today’s ruling, joined by respected appellate judges across the ideological spectrum, is the latest reminder that arguments against reasonable, life-saving gun laws rarely hold up in the courtroom,” said Eric Tirschwell, managing director for Everytown Law, the litigation arm of Everytown for Gun Safety.
“As the court recognized, states and localities have extremely broad power to restrict the carrying of firearms in public spaces.”
The 9th Circuit decided in 2016 that people do not have a constitutional right to carry concealed guns in public, allowing counties to set requirements for permits and decide who gets them.
Alan A. Beck, who represented the Hawaii gun owner, said he was barred from carrying a concealed weapon under the 2016 decision so he asked for a permit to carry a gun openly. Beck said he will ask the Supreme Court to review the Hawaii case.
The 9th Circuit has now decided that there is no constitutional right to carry a gun outside the home for self-protection, placing the court in direct conflict with other circuits and strengthening the chance the Supreme Court will step in and decide the issue, Beck said.
In California, only small towns can issue permits to openly carry guns and they rarely do so, he said. County sheriffs can issue permits for concealed guns upon a showing of “good cause” by the applicant, he said. In rural counties, such permits are often issued, but they are rarely approved in large cities, he said.
“It varies greatly from L.A. and San Francisco, where it is almost impossible to get, versus the rural counties,” he said. “That is just based on the sheriffs’ policies.”
Wednesday’s decision affects the nine Western states that make up the 9th Circuit.
CHICAGO — 50 people were shot and 10 in Chicago over the weekend, despite some of the strictest gun laws in America.
Two of the victims shot were police officers who were shot during a routine traffic stop. According to ABC 7 Chicago, the officers were conducting a traffic stop when they saw a gun in the backseat of the suspect’s vehicle. Officers ordered the suspect to get out of the car, but he reportedly refused to comply. The officers then broke the car window in an effort to arrest the suspect, a struggle ensued and the suspect fired multiple shots, hitting both officers.
Both officers are in stable condition, with one officer having been shot in the chest, side and back. The other officer was shot in the shoulder and chest.
In a Sunday tweet, Chicago Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot confirmed the suspect was later taken into custody.
Four other victims were shot and killed on Sunday, including 31-year-old Devon Welsh who police say was eating at Lumes Pancake House when a drive-by shooting occurred. According to the Chicago Sun Times, Welsh was struck multiple times after an SUV pulled up and began firing.
The Times also reports that four other victims were killed Friday night, including an 18-year-old who was shot and killed as he was walking down the street.
The ongoing violence is just the latest in tragedies that have for years gripped the city.
In 2017, then White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said more gun laws aren’t the answer.
“I think one of the things we don’t want to do is try to create laws that won’t stop these types of things from happening,” Sanders said. “I think if you look to Chicago where you had over 4,000 victims of gun-related crimes last year they have the strictest gun laws in the country. That certainly hasn’t helped there.”
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Wednesday came out swinging against Beto O’Rourke, blaming the would-be Democratic presidential nominee for the lack of deal being reached with Democrats on gun control legislation.
Beto, who once claimed to be a “staunch defender” of the Second Amendment, has raised eyebrows in recent weeks after vowing to confiscate all AR-15’s and AK-47’s in the country should he become president.
“Dummy Beto made it much harder to make a deal,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Convinced many that Dems just want to take your guns away. Will continue forward!”
Trump’s comments referenced O’Rourke’s remarks in Houston during last week’s Democratic debate where Beto called for a mandatory federal buyback of assault weapons. “Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47. We’re not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore,” O’Rourke proclaimed.
O’Rourke quickly fired back on Twitter by calling Trump a coward for refusing to take a tougher stance on gun control.
“The only thing stopping us from ending this epidemic (of gun violence) is you,” O’Rourke tweeted.
“To be clear: We will buy back every single assault weapon. We‘ll also license every gun & do a background check on every buyer. That’s what the American people want—and deserve,” O’Rourke wrote. “The only thing stopping us from ending this epidemic is you & your cowardice. Do the right thing.”
“Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has refused to allow a vote on a bill that would mandate universal background checks for gun-buyers. A proposed version of the bill passed the House of Representatives late last year.
A bipartisan group of senators have been pushing for a compromise bill that covers most gun purchases but negotiations on that bill have stalled.
WASHINGTON — Stock shares of U.S. gunmakers rose Monday amid renewed calls for gun control measures following last weekend’s mass shootings in Texas and Ohio.
According to a report published by Newsmax, American Outdoor Brands Corp. (AOBC), which makes Smith & Wesson firearms, rose as much as 7.5%, while Sturm Ruger & Co. Inc. (RGR) rose 3.8%. Ammunition maker Vista Outdoor Inc. (VSTO) gained as much as 2% while the S&P 500 Index fell 2.3% on rising trade tensions between the U.S. and China.
The jump follows two separate mass shootings that occurred over the weekend, which were followed by immediate calls from Democrats to enact stricter gun laws and tougher background checks.
Authorities say a gunman opened fire in an El Paso, Texas Wal-mart Saturday, killing 22 people and injuring dozens more. Less than 24 hours later, a man in Dayton, Ohio killed nine people and wounded several others.
Gun stocks typically rise after mass shootings as renewed calls for tougher firearms laws increase speculation that Americans will want to purchase more weapons before new regulations take effect.
President Trump on Monday commented on the weekend tragedies, calling for “bipartisan solutions” to combat gun violence. The president blamed video games, mental illness, and racism for the shootings, but stopped short of calling for federal universal background checks, a gun-control measure popular with Democrats.
He instead called for a collaboration between state and federal agencies to “develop tools that can detect mass shooters before they strike.”
WASHINGTON — Calling the deadly weekend shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas “barbaric,” President Donald Trump on Monday called for a bipartisan effort to pass stricter gun laws.
“We vow to act with urgent resolve,” Trump said.
Referring to the deadly mass shootings as “crimes against humanity,” the president also condemned “white supremacy” and called for stricter background checks when purchasing handguns.
“The shooter in El Paso posted a manifesto online, consumed by racist hate,” said the president. “Mental illness and hate pull the trigger, not the gun.”
“In one voice, our nation must condemn racism, bigotry and white supremacy,” Trump continued. “These sinister ideologies must be defeated. Hate has no place in America.”
The president targeted violent video games and social media for helping to fan the flames of hatred and said more must be done to recognize those with “mental and emotional issues.”
“We must recognize the internet has provided a dangerous avenue to radicalize disturbed mind
The president’s call to action comes in response to criticism from the left that his administration has not done enough to stop gun violence.
“We have done much more than most administrations,” he said Monday. “We have done actually a lot. But perhaps more has to be done.”
s and perform demented acts,” he said.
Police say a gunman on Saturday walked into a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, near the Mexican border and opened fire. Two more victims of the attack died in hospital on Monday.
A total of eight Mexican citizens were killed in the shooting.
Just hours later, authorities say a gunman opened fire in Dayton, Ohio. Nine victims were reportedly killed in that attack.
WASHINGTON — Democrats plan to waste no time in attacking the Second Amendment as they take power in January, according to a report published by Politico on Monday.
According to the report, Dems plan to initiate a bill that would require federal background checks on all firearm sales as part of their efforts to advance long-fought gun control measures.
The effort already has already received the stamp of approval by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who said: “The new Democratic majority will act boldly and decisively to pass commonsense, life-saving background checks.”
“The American people want this,” said California Rep. Mike Thompson, who heads a Democratic gun violence prevention task force and plans to introduce the bill.
“It’s very important to us, it’s one of our top priorities,” echoed New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler, the incoming chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, which will hold jurisdiction over the issue. “We told the American voters that we do mean to do this, and we do mean to do it.”
Although unlikely that the bill will pass in the Republican-controlled Senate, the effort serves as the first step for Democrats in pushing their gun-control agenda.
GOP North Carolina Rep. Richard Hudson, a prominent National Rifle Association ally in the House, says such a bill is useless and only targets those who already obey the law.
Universal background checks, says Hudson, “has always been a red herring.” It’s “something that… polls very well, but there’s not a single commercial gun transaction in America that doesn’t have a background check.”
“The wrong people are not going to report gun sales,” added Hudson. “So you will need a registry to know where every gun is,” an option that is vehemently opposed by the NRA.