The Republican Cloakroom – Daily Floor Wrap Up: SUMMARY OF LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS January 11
DAILY FLOOR WRAP UP
January 11, 2016
SUMMARY OF LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS
S. 142 — "To require the Consumer Product Safety Commission to promulgate a rule to require child safety packaging for liquid nicotine containers, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
H.R. 757 — "To improve the enforcement of sanctions against the Government of North Korea, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – VOTE ORDERED
H.R. 1777 — "To amend the Act of August 25, 1958, commonly known as the "Former Presidents Act of 1958", with respect to the monetary allowance payable to a former President, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
S. 1629 — "To revise certain authorities of the District of Columbia courts, the Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia, and the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
S. 1115 — "To close out expired, empty grant accounts." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
H.R. 1069 — "To amend title 44, United States Code, to require information on contributors to Presidential library fundraising organizations, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
H.R. 653 — "To amend section 552 of title 5, United States Code (commonly known as the Freedom of Information Act), to provide for greater public access to information, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED BY VOICE
H.R. 598 — "To provide taxpayers with an annual report disclosing the cost and performance of Government programs and areas of duplication among them, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED 413 – 0
H.R. 3231— "To amend title 5, United States Code, to protect unpaid interns in the Federal government from workplace harassment and discrimination, and for other purposes." – ON THE MOTION TO SUSPEND THE RULES AND PASS THE BILL – PASSED 414 – 0
NRA News Commentators | Dana Loesch: “Obama: Commander in Deceit”
And from The Daily Signal –
What Obama Got Wrong on Guns
Genevieve Wood /
President Barack Obama made some interesting claims over the past week about why America needs more gun control.
We take a look at some of his statements to see how they stand up to the facts.
10 Myths about guns
10 Myths About Guns
Sen. Chuck Grassley /
This week, President Barack Obama announced executive actions related to guns. Here are 10 common myths about firearms.
Myth No. 1: Firearm purchases at gun shows do not require a background check due to the “gun show loophole.”
When the president and others refer to the “gun show loophole,” they imply that there are no background checks being done at gun shows. As a result, much of the public has been misinformed and are led to believe that individuals who purchase firearms at gun shows are not subject to a background check.
In reality, there is no “gun show loophole.” If an individual wants to purchase a firearm from a licensed firearms retailer, which typically makes up the majority of vendors at gun shows, the individual must fill out the requisite federal firearms paperwork and undergo a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check.
The only firearms that are being purchased at gun shows without a background check are those being bought and sold between individuals, peer-to-peer, as opposed to buying a firearm from a gun dealer. These private sales are not at all different from selling a personal hunting rifle to the owner’s niece or nephew down the road. It is a private sale, and no background paperwork is required. The gun is private property, and the sale is made like a sale of the family’s good silver. The one difference is that the locus of a gun show is being used to make the private sale.
Under current law, an individual is permitted to occasionally sell part, or all, of his personal firearms collection. These private sellers, however, cannot be “engaged in the business” of selling firearms. “Engaged in the business” means they can’t repeatedly sell firearms with the principal objective of earning funds to support themselves. Some of the individuals who wish to sell a portion, or all, of their personal firearms collection do so at the show and might display their wares on a table. These “private table sales,” however, are private, peer-to-peer sales and, therefore, do not require a background check. The president cannot change criminal statutes governing requirements for which sellers must conduct background checks. His new actions don’t do so and don’t claim to do so.
In a peer-to-peer, private firearms transaction, it is already illegal to sell a firearm to another individual if the seller “knows or has reasonable cause to believe” that the buyer meets any of the prohibited categories for possession of a firearm (felon, fugitive, illegal alien, etc.).
Myth No. 2: Gun shows lack any law enforcement presence and are a free-for-all for felons and other prohibited individuals to obtain firearms.
Local, state and federal law enforcement are often present both in uniform and/or covertly in plain clothes to monitor and intervene in suspected unlawful firearms sales such as straw purchasing; purchases made by prohibited individuals, including non-residents; and the attempted sale of any illegal firearms.
Myth No. 3: Individuals who purchase firearms on the Internet are not subject to background checks.
An individual cannot purchase a firearm directly from a firearms retailer over the Internet and have that firearm shipped to him directly. An individual can pay for the firearm over the Internet at websites and online sporting goods retailers. The firearm, however, must be picked up from a federal firearms licensee, such as a gun store. In many cases, this is the brick-and-mortar store associated with the website where the gun purchase was made. Once at the retail store, the Internet purchaser must then fill out the requisite forms, including ATF Form 4473, which initiates the NICS background check process. Thus, an Internet purchase of a firearm from a firearms retailer requires a background check.
Individuals from the same state are able to advertise and purchase firearms from one another and use the Internet to facilitate the transaction. It is unlawful, under current law, to sell or transfer a firearm to an individual who is out of state. Any Internet sale, even between individuals, that crosses state lines would have to utilize a federal firearms licensee, such as a gun store, and the purchaser would be required to fill out the requisite state and federal paperwork and would undergo a background check.
Myth No. 4: The president’s Jan. 5 executive action on gun control represents landmark change regarding gun control.
With few exceptions, Obama’s executive action on firearms is nothing more than rhetoric regarding the status quo. Many senators have long argued for better and more robust enforcement of existing laws that prohibit criminals from owning guns.
It is the current law of the land that anyone engaged in the business of selling firearms must have a federal firearms license. The president’s action does not change current law, but merely restates existing court rulings on the meaning of “engaged in the business.”
Myth No. 5: The Obama administration has made firearms enforcement a priority.
The Obama administration has used its limited criminal enforcement resources to focus on clemency for convicted and imprisoned felons, the investigation of police departments, and civil rights cases. The latter two categories represent important work, but the Department of Justice lost track of one of its core missions of enforcing criminal law: prosecuting violent criminals, including gun criminals.
The Obama administration is only now making firearms enforcement a priority. Clearly, enforcing the gun laws is a new initiative, or one of the president’s actions would not have been informing all of the 93 U.S. attorneys about it.
Proof of this lack of enforcement is revealed in the decline of weapons-related prosecutions during the Obama administration. As data obtained from the Executive Office of United States Attorneys, through a Freedom of Information Act request, reveal, firearms prosecutions are down approximately 25 percent under the Obama administration versus the last year of the Bush administration.
Myth No. 6: Mental health has nothing to do with gun control.
People with certain levels of mental illness are not permitted to own guns. Many of the recent mass killings were committed by mentally ill individuals. One of the keys to preventing further mass shootings and violence committed with firearms is addressing the issue of mental health.
Background checks to prevent the mentally ill from obtaining guns can work only if states provide mental health records to the NICS system. Too many states have failed to do so. Many of the worst offenders are states with the most stringent gun control laws. For multiple years now, many members of Congress have repeatedly called for and introduced legislation that would provide incentives for states to submit their mental health records for inclusion in the NICS database.
Myth No. 7: Obama’s executive action on gun control will thwart criminals’ ability to obtain firearms.
The president’s executive action regarding firearms is focused primarily on individuals who attempt to purchase firearms through the background check process.
Criminals, however, obtain firearms in myriad illegal ways, including home invasion robbery; trading narcotics for firearms; burglary of homes, vehicles, and businesses; and straw purchasing.
My legislation, Senate Amendment 725, was specifically designed to combat the straw purchasing of firearms as well as firearms traffickers who transfer firearms to prohibited individuals and out-of-state residents.
Myth No. 8: There is a general consensus in America that greater gun control is needed to prevent mass shootings in the United States.
Despite the president’s statement to the contrary, polls have shown that the majority of Americans do not believe that stricter gun control would reduce the number of mass shootings in the United States.
The American public does not believe that making it harder for law-abiding Americans to obtain guns makes America safer. In fact, polls have shown that a majority of Americans thinks the United States would be safer if there were more individuals licensed and trained to carry concealed weapons. A majority opposes re-imposition of the “assault weapons” ban.
Myth No. 9: The terrorist “no-fly” list is a proper mechanism to bar Americans from purchasing firearms. —Obama, Jan. 5
The no-fly list is actually multiple lists, which are generated in secret and controlled by executive branch bureaucrats. The Second Amendment right to bear arms has been determined by the U.S. Supreme Court to be a fundamental right. This puts the right to bear arms in our most closely guarded rights, similar to the rights to free speech and freedom of religion. It is unconstitutional to deprive an American citizen of his Second Amendment right without notice and an opportunity to be heard.
Myth No. 10: Gun retailers need to step up and refuse to sell semi-automatic weapons. —Obama, Jan. 5
There is nothing unlawful about a semi-automatic firearm. A semi-automatic firearm simply means that a round is discharged with each pull of the trigger. These include most shotguns used for waterfowl hunting and rifles commonly used for target shooting.
Last night, in an appearance on Fox News’s Special Report with Bret Baier, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) discussed breaking the cycle of poverty, the administration’s failure on a plan to defeat ISIS, and successfully sending an Obamacare repeal bill to the president’s desk:
“2016 is going to be about the Republican party being the party of ideas and solutions.” “That’s what 2016 is going to be about. 2016 is going to be about the Republican party being the party of ideas and solutions, taking our conservative principles, reapplying them to the problems of the day, like persistent poverty, lack of economic growth, national security, unsecure borders, all of these things that are giving us a less prosperous and less secure country and giving these ideas to the country. . . .I’m looking forward in 2016 about how do we help save this country and put it back on the right track and fix these problems.”
“His plan to contain ISIS didn’t work.” “Try the defense law we just passed reauthorizing the defense department that we call the NDAA, which says we have to have a plan for combating ISIS. I think what [White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest] is trying to do is pass the buck on the fact that the president does not have a plan to defeat ISIS. We passed a law requiring such a plan to defeat ISIS. We equipped the military. We fixed the problems from the president’s budget with respect to the military so that we can take the fight to the terrorists over there. Oh, and by the way, we passed our Syria refugee bill, which is now going over to the Senate. We also passed a law plugging the holes in the Visa Waiver Program because we have terrorists trying to infiltrate the immigration system in this country. And we have homegrown jihadists. These are the issues we think the president should be paying attention to instead of trying to frustrate the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens. But more to the point, his plan to contain ISIS didn’t work, isn’t working. He has no plan to defeat ISIS. That’s what Congress has called upon him to do.”
“What we have now proven and demonstrated in Congress is that we can get this done.” “We sent a bill today to the president—actually, last night to the president—defunding Planned Parenthood and repealing Obamacare. And we got it on his desk—the first time in five years we’ve been able to do that. Why? Because we found a better, smarter strategy to get around the filibuster in the Senate. And so what we’ve now proven is that we don’t need 60 votes in the Senate anymore to go after Obamacare, to defund Planned Parenthood—which should be defunded. We have found a way to get around that. What we need is a new president. But if we get a Republican president, what we have now proven and demonstrated in Congress is that we can get this done. That’s a victory. That’s a success.”
Senator Marco Rubio’s Weekly Newsletter called for additional sanctions on Venezuela’s oppressive Maduro regime
This week in the office of U.S. Senator Marco Rubio:
Earlier this week, Marco called for additional sanctions on Venezuela’s oppressive Maduro regime, in response to the regime’s refusal to accept the results of Venezuela’s democratic elections. “ The Obama Administration and other democratically elected governments of the Western Hemisphere have a duty to not only speak out against this flagrant subversion of democracy but also to take action to ensure that this democratic opportunity in Venezuela does not slip away right before our eyes,” Marco said. “This should include applying sanctions on individuals planning, ordering or carrying out these efforts that violate human rights by further suffocating democracy in Venezuela.” Read Marco’s full statement on Venezuela’s elections and implementing sanctions on the Maduro regime here.
This week Marco demanded accountability from the Obama Administration amid reports that a missing U.S. Hellfire missile had been found in Cuba. “Preventing the proliferation of sensitive U.S. technology is one of the most important duties carried out by the State Department,” Marco wrote in a letter to Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Roberta Jacobson. “The fact that members of Congress are reading about Cuba’s possession of a U.S. missile in the newspaper rather than from you or other State Department officials is astounding and inexcusable.” Read Marco’s full letter here.
On Thursday, Marco responded to a recent report that found 41,900 mail packages with unprocessed veterans’ claims materials backlogged at the St. Petersburg, FL VA by calling for national VA reform. “The incompetence and lack of accountability at the St. Petersburg VA, and at VA facilities around our entire country, is unacceptable,” Marco said. “It is our duty as a nation to care for those who have cared for us. We must stand with America’s heroes and put an end to the dysfunction plaguing the Department of Veterans Affairs.” Read Marco’s full statement here. If you are a Floridian and a veteran encountering a problem with the VA, please contact our constituent services team toll-free in Florida at 1-866-630-7106.
On Friday, Marco welcomed the recapture of infamous drug lord “El Chapo” and called for the Obama Administration to pursue his extradition. “We can’t afford to wait for the Obama Administration to take action to bring him to justice.” Marco said. “In fact, if the Obama Administration has not already laid the groundwork for this moment, they will have already dropped the ball.” Read Marco’s full statement on El Chapo’s recapture here.
We do not believe in compromising on rights for law abiding citizens, especially self-defense rights. Our resolve is unwavering and when it comes to 2nd Amendment Rights for the law abiding people of Illinois, we are NEVER Neutral.