Carl: The fight to protect the 2nd Amendment
Last month, House Democrats rammed through two pieces of sweeping gun control legislation: H.R. 8 – Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2021 and H.R. 1446 – Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2021. I voted against these unconstitutional attempts to strip away the 2nd Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans. These pieces of legislation would effectively give the federal government unprecedented control over firearm transfers by making the background check waiting period indefinite and criminalizing the transfer or loan of a gun to a law-abiding citizen.
House Republicans have been fighting these unconstitutional efforts tooth and nail. When the Democrats brought H.R. 8 to the floor, Republicans offered an amendment to ensure U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is notified when an illegal immigrant is attempting to purchase a firearm. This amendment is critical to protect the safety of the American people, especially at a time when there is a massive surge of illegal immigrants across our southern border because of President Biden’s failure to lead and enforce our immigration laws. Unfortunately, House Democrats refused to even consider this common-sense amendment to protect law-abiding Americans.
Sadly, gun-grabbing efforts by liberals have gone even further recently. Just last week, President Biden made clear his intentions to continue ripping apart our 2nd Amendment rights when he erroneously claimed, “no amendment to the Constitution is absolute.” President Biden, falsely stating there is an exemption on background checks for guns purchased at gun shows, called on the Senate to pass H.R. 8 to ban private gun sales unless done through a licensed dealer. The President also called for the repeal of The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects the gun manufacturing industry from lawsuits related to the criminal misuse of guns.
Despite these attempts, several of my colleagues and I are working hard to protect the 2nd Amendment. One measure I’ve taken is cosponsoring the Gun Owner Registration Information Protection (GRIP) Act, which would put an end to these two sweeping gun control measures. The GRIP Act would clarify existing law prohibiting the federal government from storing information acquired during the firearms background check process. Additionally, it would clarify the prohibition on the use of any federal funding by states or local entities for the storage or listing of sensitive, personal information related to the legal ownership or possession of firearms.
President Biden and House Democrats have an embarrassingly poor understanding of the 2nd Amendment, but the 2nd Amendment is clear – the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. I will continue fighting any attempts to trample our Constitution and erode our most fundamental rights, and I will continue standing up for our values and our way of life in Congress.
Jerry Carl represents Alabama’s First Congressional District. He lives in Mobile with his wife Tina.