Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats are attempting to wedge women against the GOP by adding gun control to the renewal of a typically bi-partisan law.
These “new provisions [would] restrict gun ownership and expand transgender rights” as reported by NPR.1
But according to gun rights groups, this bill also includes ex parte hearings to deprive gun rights without due process.
Speaker Pelosi Adds Restrictive Gun Control To Renewal Of 1994 Law
In 1994, the Violence Against Women Act was passed to prevent felons convicted of domestic abuse from owning firearms.2
But under the bill House Democrats just passed, H.R. 1585, these restrictions would be expanded to include gun owners who have been convicted of no crimes and have had no opportunity to defend themselves at a hearing.
Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) said the current bill is nearly “unrecognizable from the legislation originally passed in 1994.” 3
In fact, House Republicans have accused the Democrats of playing partisan games with this bill, rather than passing a clean renewal as they had done every five years since 1994.
Conservative congresswoman and domestic abuse survivor Debbie Lesko (R-AZ) responded to the bill with a statement:
“The Democrat version of the Violence Against Women Act takes away Second Amendment rights from people without due process.”
Under the newly restrictive language, gun owners convicted of misdemeanor sexual assault, domestic abuse, or stalking will be barred from possessing firearms.
But another section of the bill is far more restrictive.
This sections adds one-sided protective orders, without the target of the order or their attorney allowed to speak in their defense, that would result in stripping 2nd Amendment rights from gun owners.
“Under section 802, a ‘dating partner or former dating partner’ would be allowed to strip a gun owner of his or her constitutional rights based on an ‘ex parte order’ in a ‘secret court’ proceeding with no due process whatsoever” wrote Gun Owners of America in a statement.
Now Democrats are attempting to use this vote to frame Republicans as opponents of women.
Before the vote, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi declared, “Members have a decision to make: will they protect survivors of stalking & domestic abuse? Or are they willing to allow their convicted stalkers & abusers to have access to firearms?”
Gun rights groups including the NRA immediately countered this claim.
“The gun control lobby and anti-gun politicians are intentionally politicizing the Violence Against Women Act as a smokescreen to push their gun control agenda. It’s appalling that the gun control lobby and anti-gun politicians are trivializing the serious issue of domestic violence” stated NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker.
Baker also criticized the inclusion of a permanent ban of gun ownership for individuals convicted of misdemeanor stalking.
“How it’s written right now, you could be convicted for a misdemeanor stalking offense for a tweet that causes someone emotional distress and then you would be prohibited from owning a firearm.”
Virginia Democrats Vote To Strip Gun Rights Without Due Process
Representatives Elaine Luria, Bobby Scott, Abigail Spanberger, Don Beyer, Jennifer Wexton, and Gerry Connolly each voted in favor of adding-in Nancy Pelosi’s gun control provisions.4
All four Republican Congressman from Virginia opposed the bill.
This bill marks the second major gun control legislation since H.R 8 to pass through the House.
Virginia Democrats appear undeterred in supporting more restrictive gun measures, a likely sign that they are confident in their reelection bids in 2020.
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