Congress Won't Renew Assault Weapons Ban
Friday, Sept. 10, 2004
WASHINGTON — Congress will not vote on an assault-weapons ban due to expire Monday, Republican leaders said yesterday, rejecting a last-ditch effort by supporters to renew it.
"I think the will of the American people is consistent with letting it expire, so it will expire," said Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn.*
The 10-year ban, signed by President Clinton in 1994, outlawed 19 types of military-style assault weapons. A clause directed that the ban expire unless Congress specifically reauthorized it.
Some Democrats and several police leaders said President Bush should try to persuade Congress to renew the ban. Bush has said he would sign such a bill if Congress passed it.**
"If the president asked me, it'd still be no ... because we don't have the votes to pass an assault-weapons ban and it will expire Monday and that's that," House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, said later.***
DeLay said the ban was "a feel-good piece of legislation" that does nothing to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals.****
Appearing at a news conference, chiefs of police from the District of Columbia, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Seattle predicted an increase in violent gun crimes if the ban expires.
* What country is Frist living in? "Polls show that Americans strongly favor renewing the ban on these weapons. In late 2003 an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found that 78 percent of adults nationwide expressed support for renewing the federal ban. A University of Pennsylvania National Annenberg Election Survey found in April 2004 that even 64 percent of the people in households with guns favor the law."
** This is total bullshit move by Bush. It allows him to campaign as if he supports the Ban (because he, unlike Frist, realizes that people support it), but behind the scenes he can work to scuttle it. He knows he won't have to sign it because the Republicans in Congress won't put it on his desk. If he really supported it he would push it. He is deliberately sitting idly by as it expires.
*** They don't have the votes because the Republican majority is united on this. The Republicans are overreaching on this one. It is clear that the Americans want this ban renewed, and they are going against the will of the people. I hope it bites them in the ass in November.
**** Just DeLay being his usual a-hole self. What do the nation's police chiefs know about gun crime anyway? Who cares about making the cops "feel good." Those pussies.
Assault weapons have no place in American society. These are military-style weapons, with rapid-fire capabilities and large-capacity magazines capable of holding dozens of rounds of ammunition, not hunting or sporting weapons. They are designed for just one thing: shooting people.
Go NOW to the Stop The NRA site and sign the petition.
Then go to the Brady Campaign site to notify your Congressperson.
[UPDATE]: My sister sent me a transcript of Weasel McClellan trying to cover for the President's bogus position on this the other day. All the lying that guy has to do for these clowns has got to be taking a toll... Check the comments to read the whole thing.