States pulling rug from under Obama gun plans
Bills exempting rifles, handguns, magazines from coming federal limits
Rallies have been scheduled to protest Barack Obama’s gun agenda, members of Congress are pondering their resistance and American consumers are speaking daily with ever-new records for gun purchases.
Now states are getting into action, with several legislatures already developing bills that would simply pull the rug from under the president’s agenda by specifying that unconstitutional rules or regulations, or executive orders, won’t be allowed.
Rep. Kendell Kroeker of Wyoming introduced HB 104, The Firearms Protection Act, and spoke to WND about the bill.
“The new bill expands to any gun owned in Wyoming and any gun regulation handed down that has to do with banning automatic rifles, banning magazines or gun registration will not apply to any gun, so long as they stay in Wyoming.”
In Wyoming, they like to get right to the point, and the plan states, “An act relating to firearms; providing that any federal law which attempts to ban a semi-automatic firearm or to limit the size of a magazine of a firearm or other limitation on firearms in this state shall be unenforceable…”
Texas also has started its work, developing a plan to block enforcement of those efforts that are in violation of the Second Amendment, which notes that the right to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed.”
Texas Rep. John Otto, R-Dayton, filed HB553 on Wednesday to make it a misdemeanor for state or federal officials to “enforce or attempt to enforce any acts, laws, executive orders, agency orders, rules or regulations of any kind whatsoever of the United States government relating to confiscating any firearm, banning any firearm, limiting the size of a magazine for any firearm, imposing any limit on the ammunition that may be purchased for any firearm, taxing any firearm or ammunition therefore, or requiring the registration of any firearm or ammunition therefore.”
Missouri has also joined the fight. On Tuesday Rep. Casey Guernsey, R-Bethany, introduced HB170, a similar bill that would block state or federal enforcement of a wide range of unconstitutional federal restrictions on firearms. It also affirms the state’s authority to regulate firearms made and owned within Missouri and makes it a felony for any federal agent to attempt to enforce a federal regulation on those weapons.
Tennessee, South Dakota and South Carolina also have similar bills pending before their legislatures. Sources close to the Tenth Amendment Center indicate as many as a dozen more states could follow suit in the coming weeks.
Alaska also is planning an upgrade of its firearms freedom act too, much like the actions in Wyoming and Texas. Those existing Firearms Freedom Acts were adopted several years ago, and simply state that federal regulation of firearms made, sold and kept in the states is banned.
The federal government imposes regulations and licensing requirements under the Commerce Clause, which regulates commerce among the states. The states challenge that weapons that don’t cross state lines are exempt.
In Wyoming, the “upgrade” should get the attention of federal agents. It states any official charged, “upon conviction, shall be subject to imprisonment for not less than one year and one day or more than five years.”
The bill additionally tacks a $5,000 fine upon the official for violating Wyoming law.
Estimates now are that there are 17 states with some type of freedom act for firearms.
Alaska House Speaker Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski introduced HB 69, which exempts “certain firearms and firearm accessories in this state from federal regulation; providing criminal penalties for federal officials who enforce or attempt to enforce a federal law, regulation, rule, or order regulating certain firearms and firearm accessories in this state.”
Chenault told Sitnews.com, “We began work on this bill before the president’s announcement … and now I’m extremely glad we did. Twenty-three executive orders have been signed … without a review from Americans’ elected representatives.”
Kroeker agreed. He said that wanting to upgrade the current Firearm Freedom Act is “I think it is pretty clear that his agenda is to disarm Americans and take way as many guns as possible.”
Texas Rep. Steve Toth told radio host Joe Pags, “If a federal official comes into the state of Texas to enforce the federal executive order, that person is subject to criminal prosecution.”
Kroeker said Obama likely will back off, because he’s “smart enough to know that if he does it he would have an armed rebellion on his hands.”
He described the brewing hostility between states and the federal government as “standing up to a bully.”
He said. “We want to try and stand up to the federal government bully and let him know we’ve had enough. … In Wyoming we’re sick and tired of the federal government overstepping its constitutional limits.”
Governors even are starting to respond. Texas Gov. Rick Perry said, “The Second Amendment to the Constitution is a basic right of free people and cannot be nor will it be abridged by the executive power of this or any other president.”
The Firearms Freedom Act actually was launched in Montana in 2009, and that law currently is under review at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Montana also has raised the issue that gun-making certainly was going on at the time Montana became a state under a compact in 1889, and the federal government was not given permission then to restrict that activity. They state says the federal government cannot arbitrarily change the agreement.
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