Brian Darling
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Are gun voters being taken for granted? Republicans control the House and self-styled pro-gun Democrats abound in the Senate. So why has neither chamber addressed any of the major gun rights issues awaiting resolution?

Numerous bills to restore and preserve Second Amendment rights to Americans have been filed, yet not one has been slated for a vote this year. John Velleco of Gun Owners of America (GOA) tells Townhall, “Every election year, the members of Congress come to pro-gun voters asking to be re-elected, yet we don’t have any pro-gun votes scheduled to come to the House and Senate floor.”

Among the bills ready for action is S. 2205, the Second Amendment Sovereignty Act, introduced last week by Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.). This bill would bar the Administration from signing onto the Arms Trade Treaty. Moran worries that this treaty allowing international bodies to regulate civilian firearms could wind up letting those institutions “restrict the lawful private ownership of firearms in our country.” The Senate should consider this important idea as part of its broader look at the risks the Treaty poses.

Then there’s H.Res. 490, an expression of no confidence in Attorney General Eric Holder, introduced last December by Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.). Though not technically a gun bill, this resolution has important Second Amendment implications. It states that one reason for no confidence is the fact that Holder has thwarted efforts to investigate gunrunning by the Department of Justice.

“Operation Fast and Furious allowed thousands of weapons of various types to be illegally sold and or transferred from the United States to violent drug cartels and known criminals in Mexico and elsewhere,” H.Res. 490 notes. Many conservatives (the resolution has 111 cosponsors) worry that the Justice Department was running guns to help advance anti-gun initiatives in the U.S.

GOA’s Velleco, for example, is concerned that Operation Fast and Furious was part of a larger Justice Department effort to impose gun control through government action other than legislation. He cites a Justice Department demand letter to the border states of California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas that “requires gun dealers to report multiple sales of long guns to an individual within a five day period.” There is no legislative requirement to this effect.

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Brian Darling

Brian Darling is a Senior Fellow in Government Studies at the Heritage Foundation. Follow him on Twitter @BrianHDarling