The House Republican Study Committee (RSC) has launched a Second Amendment Initiative for the 113th Congress under the leadership of Indiana Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-Third District) to counter what they believe is President Barack Obama’s “out-of-touch agenda” on gun control.
In a press release, RSC Chairman Rep. Steve Scalise (R-Indiana) asserted that the president’s “radical anti-gun agenda is a threat to our constitutional right to keep and bear arms.”
“Efforts to take away the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans will not reduce crime or prevent criminals from breaking the law,” Scalise said. “We will not allow President Obama and liberals in Congress to take away our right to bear arms.”
The president, according to Politico, has reined in major gun prohibition groups to concentrate on pushing new measures, including so-called “universal background checks” and a ban on so-called “assault weapons” and their original capacity magazines. Politico, quoting unnamed sources, noted that none of the participants will openly discuss what goes on in meetings at the White House with Bruce Reed, chief of staff for Vice President Joe Biden.
In exchange for what amounts to obedience to the Obama agenda, these groups, Politico reported, have “a voice in the discussions, a role in whatever final agreement is made and weekly meetings at the White House…”
Mentioned for their involvement are “the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Third Way, Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Americans for Responsible Solutions, the organization founded by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and her husband, Mark Kelly.”
Noticeably absent from that list is the Violence Policy Center, considered by many in the gun rights movement to be an extremist fringe element of the gun prohibition lobby. According to the Politico story, the VPC “has been cut out of the post-Newtown discussions, relegated to ‘the kids’ table’.”
But House Republicans may stand in the way with this newly-created Second Amendment Initiative.
“As the President continues his aggressive gun control campaign,” Rep. Stutzman said in a statement, “Republicans need to stand and defend our right to bear arms now more than ever…The RSC’s Second Amendment Initiative will help equip conservatives in Congress to defeat the President’s crusade for ineffective and unconstitutional gun controls.”
The president’s full court press may not be bearing the fruit it had hoped, however. According to the Politico story, “When the White House decided in January to not elevate National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre by responding to him, the groups followed suit, even though for years they raised money and attention by forcefully rebutting the NRA.”
Evidently, LaPierre was not in on the arrangement because he has been “elevated” anyway and has remained in the spotlight since the Sandy Hook tragedy that ignited this latest round of gun control activity. Examiner spoke with LaPierre last week and he hardly feels neglected by the anti-gun lobby. He is looking forward to the NRA’s annual convention in Houston on the first weekend in May, and he told this column that membership has spiked sharply in recent months to about five million, and it is still climbing.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s measure to ban semi-autos and magazines that hold more than ten cartridges does not appear to be gaining any traction, and other measures are getting tepid reception. The measures that appear to be moving, according to the Seattle Times, are for background check expansion and strengthening the statutes against gun trafficking and straw purchases.
Meanwhile, in Colorado, a measure to ban concealed carry on college campuses was in trouble Friday morning after backlash against remarks made by State Sen. Evie Hudak (D-Westminster) to rape victim Amanda Collins about resisting sexual assault with a firearm. Hudak later apologized but the damage was done because her comments made national news.
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Second Amendment Foundation
Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms
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