House Democrats prep package of gun bills, including magazine ban

While negotiations on some sort of gun control legislation continue in the Senate, the Democrat-controlled House is moving full speed ahead on a package of at least eight new gun control laws that could receive a committee vote as early as Thursday of this week.

House Judiciary Chairman and New York Democrat Jerry Nadler is summoning committee members back to Washington for a meeting on Thursday, and wants to bring the bills out of committee and onto the House floor for a vote as soon as possible, though their prospects in the Senate are murky at best.

The Democratic-led package will likely fail in the face of Republican opposition in the Senate. However, Democrats have acknowledged a hope — however slim — that bipartisan talks in the Senate can lead to lawmakers passing a more limited bill with support from both parties.

Nadler’s spokesman confirmed the list of bills the House Judiciary Committee will consider under the broader “Protecting Our Kids Act.” Those bills include:

  • The Raise the Age Act
  • Prevent Gun Trafficking Act
  • The Untraceable Firearms Act
  • Ethan’s Law
  • The Safe Guns, Safe Kids Act
  • The Kimberly Vaughan Firearm Safety Storage Act
  • Closing the Bump Stock Loophole Act
  • The Keep Americans Safe Act

The combined bill would introduce a range of regulations on the sale or use of firearms and associated equipment.

The Raise the Age Act would increase the purchasing age for semiautomatic rifles from 18 to 21 years, while the Keep Americans Safe Act would outlaw the import, sale, manufacture, transfer or possession of a large-capacity magazine.

Ethan’s Law would create new requirements for storing guns at homes, especially those with children, and provide tax credits for secure storage devices.

Interestingly, there’s no “assault weapons” ban included in Nadler’s gun control package, though as noted the “Keep Americans Safe Act” would ban not only the purchase and sale but the possession of any magazine with a capacity of more than 10-rounds purchased or obtained after the law takes effect. The bill, as written, grandfathers in the more than 250-million “large capacity” magazines, but as we’ve seen in states from California to New Jersey, once a ban has been put in place anti-gun politicians have no problem whatsoever revising the law to include a ban on continued possession of lawfully-purchased magazines.

At least three of the gun control bills scheduled for markup in the House Judiciary Committee would impose one-size-fits all storage mandates on gun owners, as well as subjecting them to federal prosecution if they’re found to have violated the law. Not only would this make it more difficult for gun owners to access their own firearms for self-defense purposes, it would remove the ability of parents to decide for themselves if their minor child should be able to get to the family firearm in case of a break-in or a home invader.

A recent homicide at a Columbia apartment complex has been determined to be justified after a man tried to break into an apartment and was shot by a juvenile, according to the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.

On Sunday, February 6, around 5 p.m., deputies responded to Gable Hill Apartments on Ross Road after receiving reports of an unresponsive man.

… During the investigation, deputies say they discovered that two juveniles were at home when they saw a man trying to break in. The juveniles hid but when the man entered the apartment, he fired at them. Deputies say one of the juveniles shot back with a weapon that was in the home and struck the intruder.

If the gun control bills proposed by House Democrats had been law when this defensive gun use took place, the juvenile might not have faced charges but his parents would have been facing federal prosecutors for allowing them to protect themselves with a firearm.

In the abstract, these storage bills may sound good, but the reality is that there no one-size-fits-all solution, and this bill could easily jeopardize the lives of teenagers who’ve demonstrated to their parents that they can be safe and responsible with a firearm if necessary. And as I pointed out in an earlier post, the Biden administration is already failing to fully enforce existing gun laws like prohibitions on “straw purchases,” so slapping a few more on the books looks more like an exercise in “doing something” rather than doing something that actually works to prevent violent crime.

Virtually all of the bills set to be considered by the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday are aimed squarely at legal gun owners and restricting their Second Amendment rights, while Democrats continue to largely ignore those who are illegally arming violent criminals in violation of the federal statutes currently in place. It’s not crime control they’re after. If that were the case they’d be focused on violent criminals. This is about controlling (and criminalizing) lawful gun owners who dare to exercise their right to keep and bear arms.