Gun Control

A Southern California man shot his wife and himself Monday in a San Bernardino, Calif. School, incidentally killing one student and injuring another in the process.

A year ago, California lawmakers passed a series of gun control measures in the aftermath of a much larger and higher-profile mass shooting in the same Southern California city, as the San Diego Union-Tribune covered at the time.

Following that shooting, the Senate again voted down the so-called Manchin-Toomey gun control bill, as The Atlantic reported. Named after its Democratic and Republican authors when they first wrote it following the shooting in Newtown, Conn., the bill would have required background checks for all gun sales.

  • Gun control and Second Amendment rights are among the most polarizing issues in the country, according to the Pew Research Center. Among Democratic voters, 79 percent say it is more important to control gun ownership than to protect gun rights, and that number has consistently been over 60 percent since 2000. Yet, just 9 percent of Republican voters say the same thing, a number that has plunged from 46 percent back in 2000.
  • A gun-control advocacy group led by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is threatening to spend $25 million on the 2018 elections, as Politico reported yesterday.
  • The group’s spending, though, wouldn’t just be focused on supporting and opposing candidates friendly to its cause. It would also be targeted to stop two recent pieces of legislation introduced in Congress referred to as “national reciprocity” — essentially, they would treat concealed carry permits like drivers’ licenses, making a permit issued in one state valid in another state, as Breitbart reported this week.
  • In February, President Donald Trump signed a bill rolling back an Obama-era restriction that kept people labeled mentally incompetent by the Social Security Administration from buying a gun, as the Associated Press reported.
  • In an outline on the developing feud between gun rights and gun control activists in the Trump era, the Daily Beast says that bill was the first in a series of pieces coming through Congress. There are also the national reciprocity bills, and the “Hearing Protection Act,” which would cut federal requirements on buying a gun silencer.
  • In commentary for the National Review, Rich Lowry argues liberal support for gun control is based on a fundamental ignorance of guns and refusal to learn about them. Earlier this year, Vox argued that an increase in guns leads to an increase in gun deaths.
  • Last summer, the Supreme Court declined to hear suits challenging the legality of bans on assault weapons in New York and Connecticut. (NBC News) Earlier this year, meanwhile, an appeals court ruled that the Second Amendment doesn’t confer a right to own “assault weapons,” which the state of Maryland had defined as AR-15s, AK-47s and semiautomatic rifles. A previous court had struck down the state’s ban on such weapons, as well as large-capacity magazines. (Slate)

Today we are asking six questions on gun control. Cast your V.O.T.E. here!