Co-sponsor Wars – HR 308 v. HR 822

The two firearms-related bills before the current Congress that have the most co-sponsors are Carolyn McCarthy’s magazine ban bill, HR 308, and Cliff Stearns’ National Right-To-Carry Reciprocity bill, HR 822.

Currently, HR 308 has 97 co-sponsors and added four new co-sponsors last week.

Rep McNerney, Jerry [CA-11] – 3/10/2011
Rep Clarke, Yvette D. [NY-11] – 3/10/2011
Rep Hanabusa, Colleen W. [HI-1] – 3/10/2011
Rep Pastor, Ed [AZ-4] – 3/11/2011

By contrast, the number of co-sponsors for HR 822 stands at 66 which includes 23 co-sponsors added just last week. When I last reported on HR 822 last week, it had only 57 co-sponsors. Another nine were added on Thursday and Friday.

Rep Green, Gene [TX-29] – 3/10/2011
Rep Wittman, Robert J. [VA-1] – 3/10/2011
Rep Harris, Andy [MD-1] – 3/10/2011
Rep Jordan, Jim [OH-4] – 3/11/2011
Rep Costello, Jerry F. [IL-12] – 3/11/2011
Rep Fleming, John [LA-4] – 3/11/2011
Rep Ross, Dennis [FL-12] – 3/11/2011
Rep Rivera, David [FL-25] – 3/11/2011
Rep Bilirakis, Gus M. [FL-9] – 3/11/2011

The lists of co-sponsors are a study in contrasts. For example, every co-sponsor of HR 308 is a Democrat while HR 822 is a bi-partisan bill with 12 Democrats including the 3 NRA-endorsed Democrats in North Carolina as co-sponsors. Both lists of co-sponsors are also mutually exclusive – no co-sponsor of HR 308 is a co-sponsor of HR 822 and vice-versa.

Momentum seems to be with HR 822 as it is adding co-sponsors in double-digit amounts each week. It should continue to do so if we keep up the pressure on pro-gun Congressmen to sign on to this bill. There are almost 200 Republicans and the rest of the Blue Dog Democrats who could sign on as co-sponsors but haven’t as of Friday.

By contrast, after the initial flurry of co-sponsors to McCarthy’s bill in the immediate days after the Tucson shooting, its growth has slowed tremendously. With only 83 Democrats not committed one way or another and only a handful of Republicans that might sign on as a co-sponsor, I anticipate that HR 308 has or will soon hit its high watermark. And that is good news.

UPDATE:  On Monday, two more fellow travelers were added to HR 308. I imagine this might be due to Obama starting “a national conversation” on guns or something like that. This brings the total to 99. The two additions, John Larson and Xavier Becerra, are both Democrats. Larson is Chair of the House Democratic Caucus and Becerra is the Vice-Chair.

Rep Larson, John B. [CT-1] – 3/14/2011
Rep Becerra, Xavier [CA-31] – 3/14/2011

Also on Monday, four more co-sponsors signed on the HR 822, National Right-To-Carry Reciprocity. This brings that total to 70. As I have said earlier, start calling your representative if he or she isn’t a co-sponsor of HR 822 and ask why not.

Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5] – 3/14/2011
Rep Rogers, Mike J. [MI-8] – 3/14/2011
Rep Johnson, Sam [TX-3] – 3/14/2011
Rep Kinzinger, Adam [IL-11] – 3/14/2011