Georgia House Speaker Wins Accolades From Gun Control Fans

(Bob Andres/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)

Georgia House Speaker David Ralston is a Republican. In theory, based on the majority of his party, that means he’s supposed to be somewhat pro-gun. At the very least, he’s supposed to try and pretend to be, at least.

Especially here in Georgia, where pro-gun voices are traditionally dominant.

However, Ralston decided he didn’t have to worry about gun rights voters recently when he essentially killed a bit of pro-gun legislation.

Now, he’s getting love from some on the other side.

The Georgia House’s last-day inaction on a contentious gun rights bill took many by surprise.

That included opponents of House Bill 218 such as state Sen. Michelle Au. The Johns Creek Democrat not only opposed the gun rights expansion, but sponsored her own legislation on background checks and waiting periods for gun buyers. Her proposals didn’t get any traction in the Republican-dominated General Assembly.

Au told GHN on Thursday that she was “surprised in a good way’’ by House Speaker David Ralston’s comments, after the legislative session ended, about how he let the gun rights bill die by not bringing it up for a vote Wednesday night.

Ralston, a Blue Ridge Republican, said that recent mass shootings in the United States, including a killing spree targeting spas in metro Atlanta on March 16, played a factor in his decision not to call up House Bill 218 for a vote.

“Frankly, I thought we needed to be very, very sensitive to any gun legislation,’’ he told reporters. “We’re less than two weeks out from two major mass killings. That heightens my level of sensitivity to that.’’

Au, a physician, said Ralston’s comments show “a remarkable amount of insight, especially in a state where the (gun rights) conversation is so entrenched. These conversations (about guns) can move the needle on the issue just a little bit.”

Au, a Chinese-American, warned the day before the spa shootings in Acworth and Atlanta about violence against Asian-Americans, based on several highly publicized incidents around the nation. Six of the eight people killed in the Georgia shootings were Asian women.

She said before the Senate took up bills last week that “gun safety should not be a partisan issue. Gun safety is a public health issue.”

So Ralston took a big, steaming dump on his potential allies and made his opponents very happy, and for what? Oh, folks like Au think he did the right thing, but let’s not forget the entire country is still blasting Georgia for passing their new voting law. It’s not like this is going to make them forget that.

And, again, for what?

“Oh, but it was too soon after the Atlanta shooting.”

That’s a load of male bovine excrement and you all know it. Gun control activists don’t even wait for the bodies to get cold before they start pushing for gun control, even before we know what the hell happened. They jump on it and keep beating that drum, even after it becomes clear that their proposals wouldn’t have done anything.

I, for one, am tired of fighting with one hand tied behind my back, which is what Ralston is basically advocating for.

Look, it might have been different if the bill was somehow related directly to what happened in Atlanta, but it wasn’t. There was nothing in the bill that would have had any impact on Atlanta one way or another. It was just a basic expansion of gun rights.

And Ralston tucked his tail between his legs and decided to try and play nice with the very people who are still vilifying him and every other Republican in the state legislature as a racist bastard.

As a Georgian, I’m absolutely disgusted by Ralston’s actions. When pro-gun people talk about spineless Republicans, they need to have a picture of David Ralson as the very epitome of it.

I’m not a constituent of his, which is unfortunate. I’d really enjoy voting for pretty much any primary challenger over his butt, just to get him out of office so he can’t do more damage.

But hey, I hope Ralston is happy. He got some brownie points from the people who wouldn’t spare the urine to extinguish him if he were on fire.

 

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Dec 04, 2021 11:30 AM ET