Yesterday, July 8, 2014, the United States Senate voted to proceed with a measure to consider for floor consideration the so-called "Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act of 2014." Designed to help re-elect anti-gun Democrats in the 2014 primary and general elections, Senate Bill 2363 does not comport with the U.S. Constitution and prior U.S. Supreme Court decisions.
The bill is sponsored by Democrat Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina, with the chief cosponsors being endangered anti-gun rights Senators who are Mark Begich (D-AK), Mark Pryor (D-AR), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Mark Udall (D-CO), Mark Warner (D-VA) and Al Franken (D-MN).
By now, the rest of the Senators realize that this "sportmen's" bill is a political ploy to keep Harry Reid (D-NV) and the Democrats in power in the Senate. An article in The Hill newspaper made this clear on Monday: “The legislation is meant to help several red-state Democrats in tough reelection races this year. Co-sponsors include four other Dems who, like Hagan, are facing difficult reelection races this year: Sens. Mark Pryor (Ark.), Mark Begich (Alaska), Mary Landrieu (La.) and Mark Udall (Colo.).” There are several Senators who want to offer good, pro-gun rights amendments to the bill.
Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Rand Paul (R-KY), Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Mike Lee (R-UT) are supportive of pro-gun rights amendments such as allowing national concealed carry reciprocity. Others want guns permitted on Army Corps of Engineer land and Mike Lee wants to change the Senate rules to prohibit any anti-gun rights amendments in the Senate.
Senators Cruz and Paul have “tons of amendments,” including reciprocity, a restoration of gun rights for 175,000 veterans, and a shutdown of Eric Holder’s Operation Choke Point program (that is designed to close gun stores by cutting off their credit or denying them bank accounts). Harry Reid may now “tree” the bill -- a process used to block any amendments from being offered.
There are some positive aspects to the bill like excluding ammunition and fishing tackle from Environmental Protection Agency regulation. If the proposed amendments are considered and passed, S. 2363 may turn out to be a positive gun rights bill; however, we will need to wait and see.