Second Amendment Under Fire…From Republicans

Capitol Confidential|Big Government

Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) has filed a simple amendment to the Patriot Act protecting the rights of Americans to lawfully carry a firearm.  His Amendment would stop federal agencies from collecting gun records under the Patriot Act.  The amendment preserves two provisions of current law that protects gun owner privacy from a Patriot Act exemption.

The Paul Amendment (SA 328) states in part “no provision of this Act or an amendment made by this Act shall be construed to authorize access to firearms records in the possession of licensed under Chapter 44 of title 18 of the US Code.”  The purpose of the Amendment is to “clarify that the authority to obtain information under the US PATRIOT Act does not include the authority to obtain certain firearms records.”  Seems like a non-controversial clarification of the powers of the federal government with regard to the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution.

Leadership in both parties disagree and have been doing everything to block consideration of the Paul Amendment. Neil McCabe at Guns and Patriots reported yesterday on Facebook that “finessing arcane procedural tactics, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., blocked the amendment by withdrawing his own bill for Patriot Act extension for consideration and then attached it to an unrelated bill.”  McCabe further reported that Reid was overheard on the Senate floor expressing an interest in avoiding this vote.  That was yesterday, now Republicans in the Senate Leadership are actively opposing the Paul Amendment to the Patriot Act.

In an Email obtained by Big Government from a Senate Republican Leadership staffer for Senator Jon Kyl (R-Arizona) to Republican staff below titled “OPPOSE the Paul Firearm Amendment” argues for Republicans to block the Paul 2nd Amendment protection legislation:


Senator Kyl wanted your boss to be aware of a possible firearms amendment that could be voted on today as part of an amendment agreement on the PATRIOT Act.  Senator Kyl urges your boss to vote NO on the amendment (or YES on a tabling motion, if that is how the vote is structured).  It is expected that the vote will be a 60-vote threshold.

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