You Guys are Having a Tremendous Impact!
-- More calls needed to save our greatest weapon for killing
Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22151
Wednesday, April 6, 2005
The headline says it all: "Support falters for the 'nuclear
option.'" That was the headline people read in The
Washington Times on March 23.
The article explained how support is fading for eliminating
one of gun owners' greatest legislative weapons -- the
On April 3, the New York Times cited the work that
Gun Owners of America is doing in opposing any change to the
Senate rules that would do away with the legislative
"In a setback for supporters of the change," the Times
wrote, "Gun Owners of America... argue[s] that changing the
rules to prevent filibustering nominees would lead to the
elimination of legislative filibusters, which conservatives
have relied on to protect gun rights."
It's true. As recently as last year, pro-gun forces used a
filibuster threat to keep the semi-auto ban from being placed
on the Department of Defense authorization bill. And in the
near future, GOA may be working with pro-gun Senators who
would use filibuster threats to keep gun control amendments
off of the gun makers' protection act.
ENDING FILIBUSTERS = MORE GUN CONTROL
Soon, the showdown will arrive on whether to abolish the
U.S. Senate filibuster in order to expedite the confirmation
of seven judicial nominees. As you may remember, in the
absence of the filibuster, should the Democrats ever gain
control of the Senate, there would be nothing to stop:
* Reenactment of the semi-automatic ban;
* Enactment of the .50 caliber ban;
* Enactment of the gun show ban;
* Enactment of the lock-up-your-safety trigger lock
* And much, much more.
Now, the anti-filibuster advocates are responding to our
arguments that the abolition of the filibuster will make
comprehensive gun control and registration inevitable. Their
answer? "We don't care."
ENDING FILIBUSTERS: BOTH LEGISLATIVE AND JUDICIAL
Six months ago -- when this battle started -- filibuster
opponents were erroneously raising the possibility that the
legislative filibuster could be saved. But no more.
Majority Leader bill Frist (R-TN) -- already campaigning
for president -- toured New Hampshire last month with the
"All of you know the story of the filibusters, the
obstruction and the list of bills we were obstructed on....
Filibusters don't create jobs. Filibusters don't fix
government problems.... [D]emocrats don't have to agree... [b]ut
they do have an obligation to come to the table, to allow us
In other words, there is an OBLIGATION -- in Frist's words
-- for the Democrats to stop filibustering LEGISLATION and
letting the Republicans have votes on their legislative
Notice that we're no longer just talking about ending
filibusters of JUDICIAL nominations. Now we're talking about
doing away with filibusters of LEGISLATION.
ENDING FILIBUSTERS -- IT'LL COME BACK TO "BITE US"
Here's the rub: When liberal, anti-gun Democrats get back
into power and they want to push comprehensive gun bans, gun
owners will be the ones using the filibuster to stop the Brady
Bunch's legislative agenda.
We have done this numerous times over the past 20 years.
And yet, without the legislative filibuster, the "tyranny of
the majority" will run roughshod over gun owners' rights.
Unfortunately, there are many Republicans who can't foresee
what the future might hold. Disgraced Frist aide Manuel
Miranda, fired for rifling the Democrats' computer files,
explained on an April 1st radio broadcast that the Republicans
would continue to control the Senate -- so there was no need
(he felt) to worry about the consequences.
But regardless of who controls the Senate in years to come,
Miranda said in an earlier (Valentine's Day) article in
Human Events: "[I]t is hard to imagine what single piece
of legislation conservatives fear so much that it overcomes
concern for the independence of the judiciary."
Really! How about the registration of all gun owners. How
about the banning of firearms that are currently in American
homes. How about _____________. (You fill in the blank!)
Is it really worth trading away one of our most potent
weapons, just to get judges that may or may not be pro-gun?
Remember, seven of the nine current Supreme Court justices
were appointed by Republican Presidents. Do we have seven
pro-gun votes on the Court? How about seven, even remotely
conservative justices on the high court?
We're not even close.
That's why throwing away our legislative arsenal is so
dangerous. The truth is, votes on the Bush administration's
judicial nominations could be forced by strict enforcement of
the Senate rules. GOA has explained how this can be done to
legislators and their staffs in the Senate.
But filibuster opponents feel this would be "too hard" --
compared with the "simple" procedure for repealing the Senate
rules in one fell swoop.
We realize the Senate filibuster is a tough issue. It is
hard to understand. And many of our good friends -- who
haven't used the filibuster like we have -- don't see why we
But believe us when we say this: If the filibuster is
abolished, we have lost one of our most important weapons
against comprehensive gun control.
ACTION: Another volley of calls and emails is now needed to
save the legislative filibuster. Here�s what needs to be done:
1. Forward this alert to as many people as you can!
2. Please contact your senator immediately. Ask him to
oppose the "nuclear option" and leave the Senate filibuster
rules intact. We're making headway. But we need to redouble
our efforts in these last days.
You can visit the Gun Owners Legislative Action Center at
http://www.gunowners.org/activism.htm to send your
Senators a pre-written e-mail message.
3. See if your Senator is listed below. This target list
indicates Senators who especially need to hear from you. They
are either uncommitted or could easily switch to our side if
enough gun owners contact them. So please make sure you get
friends and family to get in touch with the following:
Lisa Murkowski (AK)
John McCain (AZ)
Richard Lugar (IN)
Jim Bunning (KY)
Mitch McConnell (KY)
Susan Collins (ME)
Olympia Snowe (ME)
Thad Cochran (MS)
Chuck Hagel (NE)
John Sununu (NH)
Mike DeWine (OH)
George Voinovich (OH)
Tom Coburn (OK)
James Inhofe (OK)
Gordon Smith (OR)
Arlen Specter (PA)
Lamar Alexander (TN)
John Warner (VA)
----- Pre-written message -----
Increasingly, proponents of the "nuclear option" are making
it clear that the demise of the legislative filibuster is the
inevitable result of their proposal.
This means that a vote to tamper with the filibuster will
make comprehensive gun control inevitable.
Please do not open this can of worms.
Please oppose the "nuclear option."
Streaming Video Update
GOA has recently updated the streaming video section of our
http://www.gunowners.org/svtb.htm you will find numerous
television interviews of GOA spokesmen, all available free of
charge. Recent controversial topics include school shootings,
the impact of the Terrorist Watch List on law-abiding gun
owners, and National ID Cards. Of course, new TV appearances
will continue to be added regularly.