Sunday, a group of 10 Senate Republicans and 10 Democrats announced that they had reached a “breakthrough” deal on a "framework" of new gun laws. It’s not yet in the form of legislation. It doesn’t ban any particular guns, the way many Democrats want; but it includes money for mental health and school security, it would add juvenile records to background checks for any gun buyers under 21, it would deny guns to people convicted of domestic violence, and it includes grants for states to institute “red flag” laws.
These Republicans argue that it would be easier for people caught in red flag laws to appeal on the state level, but I’d say that depends on the state. Some of the provisions are sensible, like increasing school security, while others sound sensible on the surface but wouldn’t have prevented recent school shootings (for instance, most of the shooters didn’t have anything on their records for a background check to catch.)
Even though having the support of 10 Republicans might seem to make this a slam dunk in the Senate, it’s not clear whether Democrats who are pushing for much more radical plans will settle for it, or whether these Republicans will all stand firm after they hear from their constituents, or after they see what Democrats might try to add to it. And it will take 60 votes to overcome a filibuster.
In the meantime, conservative commentators are wondering why Republicans so close to a midterm election would want to tick off their constituents by backing new anti-gun laws that are wildly unpopular with them? (Daniel Horowitz, senior editor at The Blaze, noticed that of those 10 GOP Senators, four are retiring and none of the others are running for reelection this year. Coincidence?)
Even laws as seemingly reasonable as red flag laws can be abused to deny Second Amendment rights to someone who’s done nothing wrong. Good luck trying to convince Republican voters that they can trust the government never to falsely brand them as dangerous extremists or domestic terrorists.
The NRA issued a statement, but declined to go into detail until the “framework” actually becomes a piece of legislation.
At these links, Rick Moran of PJ Media and Spencer Brown of Townhall.com have more thoughts on this subject.
And Kevin Downey of PJ Media goes further, pointing out that Democrat DA’s aren’t even trying to arrest and lock up the people who are committing the vast majority of shootings. They call it “social justice” or “justice reform,” but Downey’s theory is that leftist DA’s have deliberately created a crime wave to give them an excuse to disarm the law-abiding.