Homeland Safety And Security Act Of 2016 Aka We Have To Do Something Act

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) introduced HR 5611, the Homeland Safety and Security Act of 2016, on Friday, July 1st. This bill is an amalgam of items that are supposed to protect us from the Islamofascists. The findings in Sec. 2 of the bill explicitly mentions ISIS and al Qaeda.

This bill has the full support of Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) who said:

“While the enemy’s tactics are evolving, the Obama administration’s strategy to defeat radical Islamist extremism is not. We have to step up our game. This counterterrorism legislation provides new tools to protect our homeland, including a provision to prevent terrorists from buying guns. It is a responsible measure that confronts this threat while protecting the rights of law-abiding citizens. I look forward to a debate and vote on the House floor next week.”

I seem to remember it was not so long ago – like a week earlier – that Speaker Ryan said the Democratic sit-in was nothing more than a publicity stunt and that the Constitution must be defended. He went to say that they wouldn’t take away a person’s guaranteed rights without due process.

Sec. 5 of HR 5611 states:


    (a) In General.--Section 922(t) of title 18, United States Code, is 
amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(7)(A) When the Attorney General is notified of a request to 
transfer a firearm or an explosive to a person who is being, or has 
been investigated during the previous 5 years, as a known or suspected 
terrorist, the Attorney General shall, as appropriate, notify relevant 
Federal, State, or local law enforcement agencies or intelligence 
agencies concerning the identity of the prospective transferee.
    ``(B) Upon being notified of a prospective transfer of a firearm or 
an explosive to a person who is being investigated as a known or 
suspected terrorist, the Attorney General or the United States attorney 
for the district in which the licensee is located may--
            ``(i) delay the transfer of the firearm or explosive for a 
        period not to exceed 3 business days; and
            ``(ii) file an emergency petition in a court of competent 
        jurisdiction to prohibit the transfer of the firearm or 
        explosive, which petition shall receive the highest priority on 
        the docket of that court.
    ``(C)(i) An emergency petition filed under subparagraph (B) shall 
be granted upon a showing of probable cause to believe that the 
prospective transferee will commit an act of terrorism, or is 
prohibited from possessing or receiving a firearm under subsection (g) 
or (n).
    ``(ii) An emergency petition filed under subparagraph (B) to 
prohibit the transfer of a firearm or explosive may be granted only 
after a hearing--
            ``(I) of which the prospective transferee receives actual 
        notice; and
            ``(II) at which the prospective transferee has an 
        opportunity to participate with counsel.
    ``(iii) In the case of an emergency petition filed under 
subparagraph (B) which is denied, the court shall require that the 
United States pay the costs and attorney fees of the prospective 
    (b) Rule of Construction.--The amendments made by this section do 
not preclude the Attorney General from arresting and detaining a 
person, including a person described in section 922(t)(7) of title 18, 
United States Code, with regard to whom an emergency petition has been 
filed under such paragraph, if the Attorney General has probable cause 
to believe that the person has committed, conspired to commit, or 
attempted to commit an act of terrorism.

Sec. 5 is a variant of the Cornyn Amendment (S. Amdt. 4749) which failed to secure enough votes in the Senate on a cloture motion. Knowing that there are not enough Senators who would vote in favor of a cloture motion on this bill, isn’t this just as much a publicity stunt as the sit-in by the Democrats? Clearly not as visually pleasing to the media as the sit-in, it is still a stunt as it allows the Republican leadership to say, “We did something!”.

While Sec. 5 marginally protects due process, lawyers are expensive and there is no guarantee of winning so as to recoup your legal expenses. Moreover, what is to say that someone like Mike Vanderboegh was not put on the list as a domestic terrorist for his Second Amendment activism at the recommendation of the BATFE, the BLM, or even the SPLC. Heck, for all we know it could be all gun rights bloggers, podcasters, or Facebook commenters just because Loretta Lynch doesn’t like us.

No one knows how, why, or if they are on the Terrorist Screening Database. There are thousands on the list because they have a similar name, a letter or number was transposed in the original report, or for any number of errors. There are also truly evil and dedicated terrorists on the list who may or may not be under surveillance by the FBI, DHS, or some other alphabet agency. Larry Keane of the NSSF pointed out late last year that under such a law all it would take to confirm to a terrorist that he or she was under suspicion was to try and buy a firearm. The NICS denial would be all the confirmation that they needed.

HR 5611 has been sent to a number of House committees. That said, all indications are that it will be voted on sooner than later. I don’t care if the NRA was marginally OK with the Cornyn Amendment or that Donald Trump thought it might be a good idea. I object to secret lists, I object to any attempt to abridge enumerated Constitutional rights, and I object to Sec. 5 of this bill.

Call, email, fax, or write your House member and let them know that you oppose Sec. 5. As the Sultan Knish blog (thanks Kevin Baker for the link) said last year, you can’t have a truce with the Left. If you think that the Mike Bloomberg’s, Shannon Watts’, or Ladd Everitt’s of the gun control world are going to compromise with us, you need to think again.

Sit-Ins Pay Off For The Democrats

It was only last week that the House Democrats held an all-night sit-in the House chamber to protest in favor of gun control. We sadly saw a hero of the civil rights movement, Rep. John Lewis (R-GA), protesting in favor of actions that would actually curtail both 2nd and 5th Amendment guarantees. At the time, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) said the Democrats sit-in was nothing more than political theater and that the Constitution must be protected.

That was then and this is now.

According to the Washington Examiner, Ryan told the House Republican Conference that the House will vote next week on a package of measures including one that would use the no-fly list to deny firearms purchases.

The House will vote on an anti-terrorism measure next week that would prevent terror suspects from purchasing guns, House Speaker Paul Ryan told GOP lawmakers Thursday.

In a conference call with the House Republican conference, Ryan, R-Wis., outlined a plan to vote on a legislative package that responds to the recent terrorist shootings, including limiting access to firearms by those on federal terror watch lists.

“The terrorism package will include measures to disrupt radicalization and recruitment, and a provision to prevent suspected terrorists from buying guns,” a GOP aide said….

The move comes as Democrats threaten to continue “sit-in” demonstrations on the House floor until the GOP majority allows votes on two specific Democratic gun control measures. The demonstrations forced the House GOP to gavel out early for a week-long recess earlier this month.

You know what this means – time to start calling/emailing/faxing your Representative. You can find their webpages and phone numbers here.

Paul Ryan: “We’re not going to take away a citizen’s due process rights.”

I know Speaker Paul Ryan has gotten a lot of bad press from conservatives lately. However, this is a time we should be applauding his stance on due process which is forthright and to the point. He rightly points out the sit-in yesterday by some Democrats was nothing but a publicity stunt.

From the transcript provided by the Speaker’s Office:

This Is a Publicity Stunt
“This is nothing more than a publicity stunt. That’s point number one. Point number two is this bill was already defeated in the United States Senate. Number three, we’re not going to take away a citizen’s due process rights. We’re not going to take away a citizen’s constitutional rights without due process. That was already defeated in the Senate. And this is not the way to try and bring up legislation.”

The Real Issue Here Is Terrorism
“Now, let’s focus on the issue at hand here: terrorism. And let’s find out what we need to do to prevent future terrorist attacks. And if a person is on a terror watch list, and they go try and buy a gun, we have procedures in place to deal with that. We want to make sure that those procedures are done correctly. And that is something we should be able to do in a calm and cool manner without these sort of dilatory, publicity-stunt tactics to try and bring a bill that already died over in the Senate to the House floor. That’s not any way to bring a bill to the floor.”

We Must Defend the Constitution
“They know we will not bring up a bill that takes away a person’s constitutionally guaranteed rights without their due process. We don’t agree with that, and the Senate already doesn’t agree with that. So I think, look, the point here, Wolf, is this is a publicity stunt. They’re trying to get you to ask me those questions for publicity’s sake. This isn’t trying to come up with a solution to a problem. This is trying to get attention.”

The House Rules Are Clear
“Look, this is the way the rules work in the House, and they have ever since we had TV. We had a similar protest when we were in the minority in 2008. Not only did the cameras not go on, they turned the lights off on us. This is what you do when you go into recess subject to the call of the chair. These are the House rules, and they’ve been this way for years.”
“This is nothing more than a publicity stunt. That’s point number one. Point number two is this bill was already defeated in the United States Senate. Number three, we’re not going to take away a citizen’s due process rights. We’re not going to take away a citizen’s constitutional rights without due process. That was already defeated in the Senate. And this is not the way to try and bring up legislation.”

Number One Bad Dad… Or Not

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals are attention whores. I don’t think that comes as any surprise to anyone who has seen some of their earlier stunts such as splashing fake bloods on fur coats or putting body-painted models in cages. And lest we forget, it is due to their actions in court that Brasstown’s New Year’s Eve Possum Drop was forbidden to use a live opossum.

Their latest attention getting scheme is to send Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) their “2012 Bad Dad Award”. His offense? He took his daughter Liza on a successful father-daughter deer hunt over Thanksgiving. They said it is for “low caliber” parenting. For some reason I don’t think they mean it as a commentary over Liza using her own Remington 700 in .243 Winchester as opposed to a .270 or .308.

In their letter to Ryan telling his of the award, PETA insinuates that parents who take their children hunting are creating future school shooting incidents.

November 28, 2012

The Honorable Paul Ryan
United States House of Representatives

Dear Representative Ryan:

On behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ (PETA) more than 3 million members and supporters worldwide, including thousands in Wisconsin, I am writing to present you with PETA’s Bad Dad Award (your certificate is on the way). You deserve the award because, instead of teaching your young daughter respect for wildlife and encouraging her to embrace nonviolence, you gave her a gun and encouraged her to kill animals for fun.

You seem to have a desperate need to assert your old-fashioned idea of manhood, to wield power over those who can’t defend themselves, even to the point of stealing their very lives for nothing more than the perverse thrill of it. I imagine there must be a lot of people who are disappointed in your lack of empathy, not only for those who are unarmed in the face of the fancy weaponry that helps you do your dirty work but also more broadly. I suspect that while you love your daughter, you don’t understand that the love of one’s offspring is shared by other living beings, including deer, whose fawns become orphaned when they are killed. And given that your daughter was “practicing,” one wonders if she is already among the ranks of hunters responsible for allowing deer to flee wounded, only to die out of sight, slowly and in agony.

How appalling to use your influence to desensitize your child to the suffering of others. In fact, the young people who have opened fire on their schoolmates—including 16-year-old Andrew Golden who, along with an accomplice, killed five people at Westside Middle School in Jonesboro, Ark., and 17-year-old T.J. Lane, who killed three people at Chardon High School near Cleveland earlier this year, had first expressed their love of hunting animals. In light of this fact alone, it seems grossly irresponsible to encourage a child to kill for “fun.”

You can’t teach kids to be tough, if that was the purpose, by encouraging them to kill those who can’t defend themselves. Being a good dad means encouraging children to engage in safe, peaceful, and fun ways for them to enjoy nature, including canoeing, bird watching, biking, and hiking—even clearing the woods of hunters’ beer cans and other trash would be a blessing. While this letter is blunt, its point is to ask you to ponder the value of encouraging compassion in your daughter, as well as in your other children, by switching to humane family activities.

Very truly yours,

Ingrid E. Newkirk

I think it is an understatement to call these people bat-shit crazy. Their next stunt is put up billboards featuring talk show host Wendy Williams nude. I can’t wait for what Joel McHale will do with that in the next episode of The Soup.

As for the award to Paul Ryan, I’m sure that it might get him a few more votes in his home district in Wisconsin from Democrats who hunt deer. I know he won’t be losing any votes – or sleep – over it.

Romney Campaign On NRA Endorsement

Along with the NRA-PVF announcement of their endorsement of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan comes the Romney-Ryan campaign’s announcement of it.

Mitt Romney today announced the endorsement of the National Rifle Association.

“As the Supreme Court has recently reaffirmed, the Second Amendment
protects a basic and fundamental individual right—the right to bear
arms,” said Mitt Romney. “And it is the NRA that protects the Second
Amendment. I am proud to have their support for my candidacy, and when I
am president, I will do all in my power to defend and protect the right
of all law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms.”

“As a lifelong hunter, I am a strong supporter of Second Amendment
rights,” said Paul Ryan. “The Second Amendment is essential to the
functioning of a free society. Not only do millions of Americans own
firearms, but recreational hunting and shooting adds billions to our
economy every year and supports thousands of jobs. The NRA is committed
to protecting our Second Amendment rights. Mitt Romney and I will have
that same commitment when we are in the White House.”

“Since 1871, the NRA has protected the right of men and women across
our country to keep and bear arms,” said Chairman of the NRA Political
Victory Fund Chris Cox. “This right is enshrined in our Constitution
through the Second Amendment. It’s the right that makes all of our other
constitutional rights possible. Americans deserve to have a friend of
our Second Amendment freedoms and hunting heritage in the White House.
That’s why we are proud to endorse Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan for
President and Vice President of the United States. Mitt and Paul will
defend all of our constitutional freedoms from those who would seek to
limit or deny them. We encourage every freedom-loving American to vote
for the Romney-Ryan ticket on November 6.”

NRA Endorses Romney-Ryan

In the not exactly unexpected news category comes the announcement that the NRA-PVF has endorsed the ticket of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan for President and Vice-President respectively. What is somewhat unexpected is the size of the crowd that came out to Fisherville, VA for the announcement and rally. It was estimated to be approximately 15,000 and cars were back up for miles trying to get in.

CSpan has the video feed from the rally. At approximately the 53:00 mark you will see Wayne LaPierre begin to give the NRA’s endorsement.

From the Romney Scrapbook on Facebook

From the Romney Scrapbook on Facebook
From the Romney Scrapbook on Facebook

In addition to the endorsement by the NRA-PVF, the rally featured a concert by country music star and NRA Life Member Trace Adkins.

The endorsement is below:

Fairfax, VA. – The National Rifle Association’s Political Victory Fund
today announced its endorsement of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan for
President and Vice President. NRA’s Executive Vice President, Wayne
LaPierre, and NRA Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF) Chairman, Chris W.
Cox, made the announcement in Fishersville, Virginia, during a rally
with both Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan in attendance. Also,
attending and performing at the press conference was country music
superstar and NRA Life Member Trace Adkins.

“Virginia is ground
zero – the front line of this election. This is where the race could be
won or lost. This is where the difference can be made. This is where gun
owners must make that difference.” said LaPierre.

“Today, we
live in an America that is getting harder to recognize every day led by a
President who mocks our values, belittles our faith, and is threatened
by our freedom.” said Cox. “So on behalf of the four million men and
women of the National Rifle Association, representing tens of millions
of NRA supporters, it is my honor to announce the NRA’s endorsement of
Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan for President and Vice President of the United

The actions of President Barack Obama have harmed the
Second Amendment for generations to come. He has appointed two anti-gun
nominees to the Supreme Court – one of whom has already signed an
opinion saying that law-abiding Americans do not have an individual
right to own firearms. Obama’s administration worked on a United Nations
Arms Trade Treaty that would undermine our Second Amendment rights, and
he has helped cover-up the deadly Operation Fast and Furious scandal,
arming Mexican drug cartels that continue to kill countless innocent
American and Mexican citizens. He has also said that the ability of
lawful citizens to carry a firearm for personal protection should be
banned nationwide. As a state legislator, he opposed a law to protect
people who use guns in their own homes for self-defense; endorsed a
total ban on the manufacturing, sale and possession of all handguns; and
supported a 500 percent increase in federal taxes on guns and
ammunition. Unaccountable to the voters, America’s 100 million gun
owners justifiably fear that a second Obama term would bring an all-out
assault on the Second Amendment.

But there’s a clear choice this
November. Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will protect our Right to Keep and
Bear Arms by appointing Supreme Court justices who will uphold the
rulings in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of
Chicago – two landmark cases which held that the Second Amendment
guarantees a fundamental, individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms for all
law-abiding Americans. Romney and Ryan have also stated their
opposition to efforts by the United Nations to implement a global
gun-control bureaucracy.

“In this election, there is no debate.
There is only one choice – only one hope – to save our firearms freedom
and our way of life,” LaPierre continued. “Get to the polls on election
day and make the difference in this campaign. Help take back our country
and protect our freedom. On November 6, vote freedom first – Vote

Paul Ryan Is A Bitter Clinger

Yesterday in Carnegie, Pennsylvania, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), the presumptive GOP vice-presidential nominee, reprised Barack Obama’s remark about bitter clingers. From The Hill:

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) began resurrecting some of President Obama’s most famous gaffes on the campaign trail Tuesday, reminding a crowd assembled at a Pennsylvania steel plant of the president’s remark four years ago that some voters are “clinging to their guns and religion.”

“Remember this other time when he said people want to cling to their guns and religion?” Ryan said. “Hey, I’m a Catholic deer hunter, I’m happy to be clinging to my guns and religion.”

I remember Carnegie well because that is where we stayed while attending the 2010 NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh. I seem to remember that many of the people staying at our motel were bitter clingers as well. Not to mention we took this picture on the way home from it.

You can see Ryan’s comments in the video below.

Ryan On Guns

With Mitt Romney’s pick of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to be his running mate, I wanted to know where Ryan stood on guns and gun control. I know where Ryan stands on economic issues but what about guns.

It’s a good record. He has been both rated A and endorsed by the NRA-PVF going back to at least 2002. The archives don’t go back any further than that.

Gun Owners of America rates him an A. They define this as “A & A- Pro-Gun Voter: philosophically sound.”

On The Issues has this on his record on gun rights:

  • Voted YES on prohibiting product misuse lawsuits on gun manufacturers. (Oct 2005)
  • Voted YES on prohibiting suing gunmakers & sellers for gun misuse. (Apr 2003)
  • Voted YES on decreasing gun waiting period from 3 days to 1. (Jun 1999)
  • Rated A by the NRA, indicating a pro-gun rights voting record. (Dec 2003)
  • National cross-state standard for concealed carry. (Jan 2009)
  • Ban gun registration & trigger lock law in Washington DC. (Mar 2007)
  • Allow reloading spent military small arms ammunition. (Apr 2009)

More recently, he was a co-sponsor of HR 822, the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, and HR 615, the Collectible Firearms Protection Act, which allows M-1 Garands and M-1 Carbines to be repatriated without State Department approval.

Ryan is also an outdoorsman. He reportedly proposed to his wife Janna at his favorite fishing lake in Wisconsin. Moreover, in what will drive the PETAfiles nuts, he includes pictures of deer and turkey that he shot on his Congressional campaign website. Here is Ryan with a nice 8-pointer.

With regard to the contempt vote for Attorney General Eric Holder, Ryan said Holder brought it upon himself for stonewalling the Oversight Committee in the investigation of Operation Fast and Furious. The video of this interview can be seen here.

On the Department of Justice’s handling of the “Fast and Furious” operation:

Paul Ryan: Attorney General Eric Holder brought this upon himself. He has been stonewalling Congress for 16 months and, yes, he can avoid this if he brings the documents that have been requested for months.

NeilCavuto: Do you think a lot of cynics will say quickly that this is along party lines and this is sort of like a Republican cabal to embarrass the Attorney General and embarrass the White House. What are you saying?

Paul Ryan: I think what’s embarrassing is “Fast and Furious.” It is something that should never happen ever again and we need to get to the bottom of it. All Congress is doing is its job, detailed in the Constitution, to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. We have separation of powers for a very important reason, to preserve liberty and limits to government, and this is being infringed upon by this stonewalling so we are just doing our jobs here in the Legislative Branch.

 Finally, here is what a much younger Paul Ryan had to say to C-Span about gun control laws back in 1998 when he was a Congressman-elect. (Thanks to TTAG for the pointer on this.)

As a gun owner, I think Mitt Romney made a good choice with the pick of Paul Ryan as his running mate. As an American, I think he made an even better choice because of Ryan’s determination to not pass the buck on fiscal issues to another generation.  
UPDATE: More on Ryan and the Second Amendment from HotAir.com. Also has another picture to drive PETA nuts not that they aren’t already.