Issue: S. 2938, Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. (Legislative vehicle: To designate the United States Courthouse and Federal Building located at 111 North Adams Street in Tallahassee, Florida, as the “Joseph Woodrow Hatchett United States Courthouse and Federal Building.”) Question: On Concurring in the Senate Amendments to the House Amendment.
Result: Passed in House, 234 to 193, 3 not voting. Agreed to earlier by the Senate (Senate Vote Number 242, 6-23-22). Became Public Law 117-159 (signed by the President, 6-25-22). GOP and Democrats scored.
Freedom First Society: The solution to crime is not to create a totalitarian state, where only the government has guns. Moreover, guns are not the problem, it’s the criminal using the gun. Proponents of this legislation view it as only a first step. Apparently, they want to use it as a step toward total civilian disarmament. The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act contains much that is unconstitutional (see Read more).
We have assigned (good vote) to the Nays and (bad vote) to the Yeas. (P = voted present; ? = not voting; blank = not listed on roll call.)
Bill Summary: This legislation provides funding for States to infringe our rights protected by the Second Amendment and to violate our due process guarantees. In particular, it provides funds for states to implement so-called “red flag” laws.
The bill also treats 18-, 19-, and 20-year-old Americans as second-class citizens with respect to gun purchases, and it criminalizes routine gun transactions between family members and friends.”
Congressional Research Services Summary:
Legislative Vehicle Shown Here (still on 7/3/22):
Passed House (05/18/2022)
This bill designates (1) the Federal Building and United States Courthouse located at 111 North Adams Street in Tallahassee, Florida, as the Joseph Woodrow Hatchett United States Courthouse and Federal Building; and (2) the U.S. Postal Service facility located at 120 4th Street in Petaluma, California, as the Lynn C. Woolsey Post Office Building.
Analysis: Proponents repeatedly argue that this legislation must be regarded as only a first step. Clearly, many legislators are opposed to the Second Amendment and want to ban all private gun ownership. That is a certain path to tyranny and to creating a population unable to protect itself from emboldened criminals.
The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act will not make our communities safer. On the contrary, restricting the ability of law-abiding Americans’ to protect themselves and their families is a step toward chaos leading to government tyranny.
Gun controls do not stop criminals, because criminals have no regard for the law. But this legislation is not misguided as to its real objective. It is part of a calculatingly deceptive agenda to disarm the public by forces that seek our enslavement.
The excerpts below from the House debates on the measure reenforce our analysis.
From the Congressional Record House of Representatives (6-24-22) [Emphasis added]:
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-New York), Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary:
“But today, Mr. Speaker, we take a historic first step toward ending the epidemic of gun violence in this Nation, the only developed Nation with this problem….
“This cannot be the last step, but we also cannot let another day go by without taking action to make our communities safer and to keep even one more family whole….
“This legislation includes provisions that will save many lives. Like the Protecting Our Kids Act, it includes funding to implement extreme risk protection laws and the prohibition on straw purchasing. It also strengthens background checks for those under 21, makes more sellers responsible for conducting background checks, takes steps to address the boyfriend loophole, and provides significant funding for programs that will make our communities safer.
“Today, we will send legislation to the President’s desk, for the first time in decades, that will make progress toward ending the scourge of gun violence.”
Freedom First Society: Rep. Nadler emphasizes that this legislation “cannot be the last step” in ending “gun violence.” With other representatives (below), we see a citizen disarmament agenda whose last step is the complete prohibition of private ownership of firearms. This would void the protection our Founding Fathers gave that right with the Second Amendment.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Committee on the Judiciary:
“But today, [Democrats] are coming after law-abiding American citizens’ Second Amendment liberties.
“Understand what this legislation does. This legislation tells States: Someone who doesn’t like you can report you to law enforcement or to a judge. There will be a hearing, a hearing where you can’t be at, your lawyer can’t be at, you can’t confront your accuser. You didn’t commit any crime, but they can take your property. They can take your guns. They can take away your Second Amendment rights. And then you have to petition to have a subsequent hearing where you get them back. That is what this legislation does.”
Freedom First Society: Yes, but it is not a partisan problem. Republicans are building Big Brother government, too. The Republican Party merely postures as catering to a conservative constituency while continuing the assault, often in different areas. Or it goes along with Democrat initiatives ostensibly reluctantly.
Remember that is was Republican President Nixon who have us the Environmental Protection Agency and that Republican President Trump negotiated the USMCA taking us down the regional government path like the EU as steppingstones to Insider-controlled world government.
The Republican Party would take a path to the same tyranny as the Democrats only a little more slowly and not always so obvious. For more than a century, the forces seeking to build big government, starting with Insiders closely associated with the international banking firm of J.P. Morgan, have had their fingers in both parties and used the partisan wrestling match to their advantage. According to Establishment historian Carroll Quigley in his monumental Tragedy and Hope, one Morgan colleague allied with the Democrats, Morgan himself and other partners supported the Republicans, and still other Morgan associates had connections with the “extreme Right” and the Left.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Speaker of the House:
“Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the bipartisan Safer Communities Act, a strong step forward to combat America’s epidemic of gun violence and to protect our precious children….
“All of us who have met with survivors in the wake of the tragedies have heard their message loud and clear. We must do something.
“Today, in their honor, we heed their powerful cry, sending a major gun violence prevention legislation to President Biden’s desk for signature. We send it to the President for his signature, with gratitude for his leadership on this important issue. He was the author of the Brady Law in 1994 and has been a champion ever since.
“This legislation, the bipartisan Safer Communities Act, includes several strong steps to save lives not only from horrific mass shootings, but also from the daily massacre of gun crime, suicide, and tragic accidents.
“Included in this package are two major provisions which we have championed here in the House:
“First, this bill includes significant investments to help States establish Extreme Risk Protection Order Laws, otherwise known as red flag laws….
“Secondly, this bill takes strong action to combat straw purchases, a cause Congresswoman Robin Kelly spearheaded in our Chamber. Although we hear about the notorious mass murders every day on our streets and in our country, murders take place. Doing so will make it illegal to buy guns on behalf of those who cannot legally purchase.”
Freedom First Society: Rep. Pelosi cleverly supports the Left’s tactic to demonize the weapon (gun violence). But guns don’t shoot people by themselves. Instead, we have a crime problem to which government has contributed (see later). We also have a government problem, with forces working to implement civilian disarmament and make slaves of us all.
Rep. Mike Johnson (R-Louisiana):
“There is a right, however, a crystal-clear right in the Constitution to keep and bear arms. But here we are today. Congress is moving full steam ahead to restrict the right to self-defense for law-abiding gun owners and the right to due process for all Americans….
“President Biden and his administration are already disobeying laws that we have on the books to revoke firearm dealer licenses over simple clerical errors. This legislation is going to make that worse. This is not going to help anything. It is going to lead to more errors, more false flags, more backlogs in the NICS system. There is nothing in this bill to fix that. There is nothing in this bill to increase school safety.
“Two weeks ago, I had a very moving conversation with Pastor YJ Jimenez. He is a pastor on the ground ministering to the people of the Uvalde community who have suffered such an unspeakable loss….
“He said, You know what, we need to address the root causes of all this bloodshed. He said America’s problem is not guns. America’s problem is a heart problem. And he is exactly right.
“Today we are seeing the results of decades of decline in the secularization of American society and the open assault on our institutions: family, religion, morality, the breakdown of law and order….
“We need to address the root causes.”
Freedom First Society: Amen.
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas):
“I and many other members of Congress have introduced commonsense gun safety legislation to make communities safer — over and over, year after year, Congress after Congress. Until now, we have been unable to pass any meaningful legislation.
“After more than twenty years of drafting and repeatedly introducing gun safety legislation, like my bill, the Mental Health Access and Gun Violence Prevention Act to increase access to mental health treatment and promote reporting of mental health information to the background check system, I am encouraged by the steps we are taking today but wish we did not have to lose so many lives to reach this point….
“Two weeks ago, this body proved to the American people that a compromise could be reached on sensible gun safety measures when we passed the ‘Protecting Our Kids Act.’ That legislation, which I introduced along with Chairman Jerry Nadler and Representative Mike Thompson, encompassed decades of our hard work and proved to be the catalyst for the bill we are considering today. [That bill did not get past Senate]….
“With the passage of this bill, we make a significant step forward in the fight to end gun violence. But we must keep working to find reasonable solutions to other problems that contribute to gun violence in this country that are not addressed in this bill….
“23 years after Columbine when I first began introducing gun safety legislation, and hundreds of thousands of gun deaths later, we continue to mourn the unnecessary loss of life. Enough is enough….
“The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act would inject $4.5 billion in critical funding into various state agencies and programs through the Department of Justice, Department of Health and Human Services, and Department of Education to: Expand community mental health services for children and families, and fund school-based mental health services and supports; Implement evidence-based school violence prevention efforts; and Encourage and support evidence-based, community violence intervention programs and crisis intervention services, including the implementation of vital Red Flag Laws — which have been proven to reduce the firearm suicide rates in states that have already enacted such laws.”
Freedom First Society: Again, the campaign for civilian disarmament masquerades as a campaign to “end gun violence” and make us safer (actually, anything but safer).
Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Arizona):
“This bill infringes on the constitutionally protected rights of law-abiding Americans, and it provides funding for States to infringe on Americans’ Second Amendment rights and violate their due process rights.
“It treats 18-, 19-, and 20-year-old Americans as second-class citizens. The Ninth Circuit recently held that the Second Amendment applies to 18-, 19-, and 20-year-old Americans just like it does to Americans over the age of 21.
“This bill criminalizes routine gun transactions between law-abiding Americans.
“Justice Alito, in his concurrence, highlighted the flawed logic used by the supporters of this bill. Alito said: ‘Does the dissent think that laws like New York’s prevent or deter such atrocities? Will a person bent on carrying out a mass shooting be stopped if he knows that it is illegal to carry a handgun outside the home? And how does the dissent account for the fact that one of the mass shootings near the top of its list took place in Buffalo? The New York law at issue in his case obviously did not stop that perpetrator.’
“The essence of this is gun controls do not stop criminals because criminals have no regard for the law. That is the definition of a criminal.
“This bill will restrict law-abiding Americans’ ability to purchase firearms and protect themselves and their families. It violates a basic God-given right.”
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Calif.):
“Mr. Speaker, instead of treating law-abiding citizens as if they were criminals, maybe we should start treating criminals as if they were criminals. Stop the plea bargains, put gun predators behind bars until they are old and gray, and execute the murderers.
“Those measures worked until a generation of soft-on-crime judges, woke district attorneys, and politically correct police commissioners made a mockery of our laws….
“They could come before a judge to challenge the findings in open court, submit evidence on their behalf, and face their accuser, but not under the red flag laws this bill promotes….
“Just laws hold people accountable for their own actions; unjust laws hold them accountable for other people’s actions. This is an unjust law.”
Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland), House Majority Leader:
“The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which was overwhelmingly passed by the United States Senate, and which I am pleased to bring to the floor today, is a step in the right direction to take action.
“This legislation includes measures that will reduce the threat of gun violence and save lives across the country. It will help implement red flag laws that empower law enforcement officers to keep guns out of the hands of people at risk of using them to harm themselves or others. Closing the so-called boyfriend loophole in this bill will prevent people convicted of domestic abuse in a dating relationship from possessing deadly firearms. If they have displayed violence, they ought to be prohibited from getting weapons that will make mass violence more probable and possible. It will also require more thorough background checks for Americans under the age of 21 who seek to purchase a gun….
“The Court’s decision to make it even easier for bad actors to carry dangerous concealed guns without restrictions should serve as a reminder that we need to take additional active steps to protect our communities and our kids, actions that are supported by the overwhelming majority of the American people.
“If we fail to do that, if we allow this legislation to be the end instead of the beginning, parents will continue to receive that dreaded, unfathomable call that they will never see their children again, and new monuments honoring victims will continue to pop up in communities across the country.”
Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas):
“Do you know what?
“When our colleagues say things like what the President said, that whether it is a 9-millimeter pistol or a rifle, I am going to continue to push to eliminate the sale of those things. When it is Representative Mondaire Jones saying that semi-automatic weapons would qualify as assault weapons and these things should be banned. Or when the Democrats tweeted that semi-automatic rifles are weapons of war, then we should believe you.
“We should believe you that you want to take those weapons. That is what you are saying. That is what my colleagues are saying.
“Here is the thing: my colleagues say, oh, don’t worry, this is just money for mental health.
“Do you know what my colleagues on the other side of the aisle and some academics say?
“They have put out stories talking about how supposedly conservatives are suffering from mental health issues and that Republicans have become the cult of the mentally ill.
“‘Is political conservatism a mild form of insanity?’ writes Psychology Today…. “What do you think you want to do with the mental health money? What do you think you want to do?
“You want to come after our ability to defend ourselves against the very tyranny you want to undermine by taking away the weapons we can use to defend ourselves against that tyranny. That is the purpose.
“My colleagues on this side of the aisle — the handful who are going along with it — should be ashamed of themselves because right now, today, we have a duty to stand up here and defend our right to defend ourselves against the very tyranny that you ignore.
Rep. Scott Fitzgerald (R-Wisconsin):
“Current extreme risk protective orders that exist in 19 States do not come close to providing adequate due process protections. We cannot support the use of taxpayer funds to implement more such unconstitutional laws without specific and ironclad assurances that due process rights will be protected.”
Rep. Thomas B. Tiffany (R-Wisconsin):
“Mr. Speaker, America does not have a gun problem. America has a crime problem.
“Mr. Speaker, law-abiding Americans do not want more laws chipping away at the Second Amendment. They do not want to see their right to bear arms eliminated on the installment plan.”
Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colorado):
“Mr. Speaker, it is estimated that legal guns save 162,000 lives annually and prevent 2.5 million crimes a year, or 6,849 crimes every day. By their own admission, criminals fear armed citizens more than they fear the police.
“Up to 90 percent of criminals who commit crimes with a gun do not acquire that firearm legally.”
Rep. Mark E. Green (R-Tenn.):
“Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to this flagrantly unconstitutional gun control act. This bill is yet another attack on our God-given rights to self-defense.
“For instance, the bill would provide taxpayer dollars for State-level gun confiscations without due process….
“Our Founding Father, George Mason, who wrote the Virginia Declaration of Rights on which our Constitution’s Bill of Rights is based, once said: To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them.”
Rep. Ben Cline (R-Virginia):
“I rise in defense of our Constitution today, in defense of law-abiding American citizens, and against this Senate gun control bill.
“This legislation takes the wrong approach in attempting to curb violent crimes. It turns our system of due process on its head. You will now be found guilty and your guns taken away until you can prove your innocence.
“It has vague language containing insufficient guardrails to keep guns out of the hands of criminals or prevent mass violence.”
Rep. Andrew S. Clyde (R-Georgia):
“Now, regarding this gun control bill before us today, this bill would have done nothing to curb the actions of illegal-minded criminals intent on harming our children. But it will harm the law-abiding citizens of this great Nation by violating their Second, Fourth, Fifth, and 14th Amendments, specifically, their due process rights.”
Rep. Dan Bishop (R-North Carolina):
“The renewed assault on the Second Amendment is more than sufficient grounds to oppose this bill, but even the constitutionally permissible components repeat the terrible misjudgment that has afflicted this type of legislation for far too long.
“I have said before that you are not grappling with the issue: 60 years of targeted destruction of the American culture by the secular and postmodernist left. Foremost in that destruction has been the unrelenting assault on the family.
“So what does this ‘do something’ bill do?
“It displaces families further by building a massive new mental health delivery bureaucracy into public school agencies; it connects Medicaid and CHIP directly to schools for early and periodic screening, diagnostic, and treatment services in schools; and it supports the provision of culturally competent and trauma-informed care in school settings.
“Washington has yet to recognize that it is the author of the devastation we confront, and Washington is still failing to grapple with the core issue. They are taking another step down the long path we have trod that has transformed America just as they want.”
Freedom First Society: Some actors recognize and intend that they are the authors of the devastation, but naturally they don’t admit it.
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Kentucky):
“Almost everybody on the other side of the aisle today said, it doesn’t go far enough. What do they mean? Well, it is a red flag law bill, and they want to take all of the guns from some of the people.
“It doesn’t go far enough for them because it doesn’t yet take all of the guns from all of the people. That is their goal….
“This bill is ineffective, unconstitutional, and ill-conceived without consideration for the dangerous unintended consequences.
“Did the drafters consider that changing the definition of ‘gun dealer’ to be more ambiguous is going to make every American a gun dealer when they transfer a gun to a friend or a family member?”
Freedom First Society: Or perhaps the consequences are intended.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Committee on the Judiciary:
“Mr. Speaker, experience has taught me when you have to say a bill is constitutional, it is probably not. When you have to say a bill adheres to due process, it probably doesn’t. And this bill certainly doesn’t….
“Mr. Speaker, again, I urge a ‘no’ vote on this legislation.
“Proponents say that this bill doesn’t violate due process. Nothing could be further from the truth.
“You haven’t been charged with a crime, but there is a hearing, a hearing that you are not allowed to be at. You can’t be present at a hearing where you don’t have a lawyer and a hearing where a judge can take your property.
“Again, just to underscore this, you haven’t been charged with a crime, but there is a hearing where your property and your rights are at stake.
“You are not allowed to be there; your lawyer is not allowed to be there; and you can’t confront your accuser. But they can take your gun; they can take your property; and they can take your Second Amendment liberty.
“Here is the scariest part of all: As my friend from Kentucky just pointed out, the Democrats say this is just the first step, that this doesn’t go far enough. Holy cow. So that kind of proceeding doesn’t go far enough when it comes to your Second Amendment liberties?…
“You can say all day long that it doesn’t violate due process, but as I said just a few minutes ago, every time I hear that, experience has taught me that it most certainly does. When you have to say it, it probably does. In this case, it is certainly violating due process.
“There are other problems, but for that reason alone, we should vote ‘no.’
“Again, the scariest thing of all is that they are saying: “Oh, this is just the first step. This doesn’t go far enough.” Imagine where they want to take us.
“Their beef is with the Second Amendment. They want it to go away. Don’t let it happen. I urge a ‘no’ vote.”
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-New York), Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary:
“Mr. Speaker, the difference between this country and other countries is only that in this country do we have mass shootings and mass murders of children. No other country has them.”
Freedom First Society: If so, we should reject a liberal culture that generates such criminals. Rep. Nadler also would have us overlook mass shootings in other countries, such as one that recently occurred in a shopping mall in Copenhagen, the capitol of Denmark. Denmark has some of the strictest gun controls of any nation in Europe.
Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-Oregon):
“The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act will help to protect Americans and make gun sales safer. The most effective way to protect communities from gun violence is to keep guns out of the hands of individuals who are a danger to themselves and others.”