In the wake of two more mass shootings, Democrats are again using the carnage as a political football. This time, they are resisting “Red Flag” laws that would disarm those who a court finds to be a clear and present danger to themselves and others.
Backed by President Donald Trump, a federal red flag law would allow law enforcement to at least temporarily intervene and disarm those who make overt threats. The recent El Paso, Texas, gunman reportedly made threats that he planned to follow through on mass murder. His parents went as far as to report their 21-year-old son to law enforcement before he went on a rampage.
The preventative laws supported by the White House would have, at least in theory, prompted police to intervene and determine whether a credible threat existed or not. They lacked the probable cause under current law to remove the killer’s firearms, and have an impartial professional assess the man’s mental state.
“We can and will stop this evil contagion,” Trump said. “That is why I have called for red flag laws, also known as extreme risk protection orders.”
Although some states have some versions of a red flag policy, Congress has been hesitant to move forward on a measure that improved community safety without it also protecting the rights of gun owners being attacked by frivolous claims. Conservative lawmakers recognize the potential of anti-gun zealots to abuse red flag laws by filing false and punitive reports.
Already, the country has watched Democratic presidential hopefuls try to exploit the deaths for political gain by claiming the president is somehow to blame. That lack of respect for grieving families, willingness to weaponize issues and reject law and order have GOP lawmakers rightly concerned about law-abiding citizens being targeted. To that end, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has rejected bipartisan red flag legislation.
“We Democrats are not going to settle for half measures so Republicans can feel better and try to push the issue of gun violence off to the side,” Schumer stated. “Democrats in the Senate will seek to require that any E.R.P.O. (Extreme Risk Protection Order) bill that comes to the floor is accompanied by a vote on the House-passed universal background checks legislation.”
The minority leader’s words are Democrat code for “we want to take away your guns, all of them.” All 50 states and the District of Columbia already require background checks for gun purchases. It’s abundantly clear that Schumer and far-left Democrats want to subvert the Second Amendment and disarm the citizenry. He may also be afraid that a Republican-led Senate would garner support from moderate voters who favor common-sense firearm regulations as the 2020 election near.
“The notion that passing a tepid version of an Extreme Risk Protection Order bill — alone — is close to getting the job done in addressing rampant gun violence in the U.S. is wrong and would be an ineffective cop-out,” Schumer added.
For Democrats in the age of “resist” and “obstruct,” the status quo serves their political ends. By doing nothing on salient issues such as protection against potential mass murderers, Democrats keep the anti-gun campaign issue alive. The fact that more Americans may die due to their effort to get power appears secondary to Democrats.
Schumer has already pushed for a strategy to link extremist legislation he knows cannot pass the Senate as a way to prevent a practical red flag law from reaching the president’s desk. In contrast, leading Senate Republicans are lining up to push through bipartisan red flag legislation before more families endure the tragedy of losing loved ones.
“I spoke with the President this morning about this proposal, and he seems very supportive,” South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said. “Many of these shootings involved individuals who showed signs of violent behavior that are either ignored or not followed up. State Red Flag laws will provide the tools for law enforcement to do something about many of these situations before it’s too late.”
In a normal world, Democrats would be happy to take whatever they can get on gun control. What makes this not normal is that Donald Trump is President of the United States. Democrats understand that, by doing nothing, Trump and the Republican Party will end up taking the blame. They are playing political games with your constitutional rights.