Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ignoring Constitutional Rights in the State of the Union

In yesterday’s State of the Union address, President Obama advocated for Congress to pass laws to ban semiautomatic assault weapons and get “massive ammunition magazines off our streets.”  However, the President’s two proposals would unconstitutionally infringe upon Second Amendment rights, as explained by testimony presented at a Senate Judiciary hearing.

At a hearing earlier in the day, Cooper & Kirk partner Charles Cooper, an RNLA Board Member, explained that the test for constitutionality is whether the banned arms are in “common use for lawful purposes in this Nation.”  Cooper concludes, with detailed analysis, that semiautomatic assault weapons and massive ammunition magazines are “plainly” in common use, and it would be unconstitutional to ban them. As of 2007, 77% of handguns were semiautomatic pistols.  There were nearly 4.8 million massive ammunition magazines handguns imported from 1994 through 2000.  Americans legally purchase these guns for self-defense, hunting, and target shooting. 

Yesterday’s State of the Union began with President Obama quoting John F. Kennedy’s statement that “the Constitution makes us not rivals for power, but partners for progress.”  The Constitution may have been mentioned at the beginning of his speech, but little respect for it followed when Obama discussed legislative proposals.  In actually, the reputable document protects the right to bear arms for law-abiding citizens, but Obama wishes to selectively ignore the Constitution to promote his vision of “progress.”

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