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Bruce W.
Republican AR 4

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  • Gun Control and Americans’ Second Amendment Rights

    by Representative Bruce Westerman

    Posted on 2016-01-06

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    WESTERMAN. Mr. Speaker, I would also like to thank the gentleman from Indiana for leading this Special Order tonight.

    Mr. Speaker, the Second Amendment is crystal clear. It ensures that the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. The founders rebelled against the largest empire in the world. They knew it was crucial to guarantee individuals the right to protect their life, liberty and property. That is the entire point of the Second Amendment.

    Unfortunately, we have a President more obsessed with the politics of gun control than living by the oath he twice took to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

    The President should work with Congress to solve the problems facing this country, not try to take on the legislative duties of Congress.

    Americans have a history of confronting those who wish to take away their rights, and they have said: ``No. You can't do that.

    The best way to fight against the gross overreach by the Federal Government is for citizens to exercise their Second Amendment rights.

    The good news is the people of this country, the responsible people who will exercise their constitutional rights and follow the law, are already doing this. They are flocking to purchase guns and ammunition despite President Obama's best efforts.

    Since President Obama was sworn into office, 106 million background checks for gun purchases have been conducted by Federal or State authorities. Only 96 million were conducted in the previous 11 years. Gun makers have doubled their manufacturing output since 2009 as well.

    Meanwhile, according to the ATF, the number of privately owned firearms in the U.S. has increased from about 250 million twenty years ago to roughly 350 million today.

    President Obama's obsession with killing the Second Amendment has unintentionally become the catalyst for gun ownership in America. The firearms industry's $43 billion nationwide economic impact has more than doubled since 2009 and is also one of the few bright spots in the Obama economic record.

    But there is more good news in all of this. Despite the White House's misleading rhetoric, violent crime rates are consistently down over the last 20 years. According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Report, the number of violent crimes has decreased 35.5 percent over the last 20 years.

    There are more guns than people in the United States; yet, the violent crime rate continues to tumble because a criminal knows a well- armed gun owner is a direct threat to a criminal's safety.

    And despite President Obama's obsession with undermining the Second Amendment, Federal weapons convictions have dropped 35 percent compared to 2005.

    The Obama Department of Justice should focus on enforcing current Federal weapons laws instead of issuing ideological edicts from the executive branch.

    Once again, I would like to thank my colleague from Indiana, Mr. Stutzman, for his leadership on this issue.

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