I’m going to do my best to cover the debate and voting on HR822 in this thread. Keep reloading, and I’ll keep updating. If you want to follow along yourself, you can here on C-SPAN.
12:03PM: Congress just came into session. Looks like the debate won’t begin until 1:15PM EST
01:00PM: Congress is back from recess. The debate should begin shortly.
01:12PM: Blah blah blah blah. If we could harness all this hot air, we’d solve all our energy problems.
01:13PM: The Democrats keep yammering about jobs. It’s funny, but I managed to find a job without the help of Congress.
01:19PM: They are yammering about other bills. I’m going to move on, and I’ll move this post back to the top once they start debating HR822.
01:43PM: HR822 is up. Lamar Smith (R-TX) is introducing the bill.
01:45PM: John Conyers is leading the debate for the opposition. Says there’s a misunderstanding that the right to keep and bear arms has anything to do with being able to bear arms.
01:47PM: Conyers doesn’t seem to realize that his home state of Michigan already recognizes the permits of every other state.
01:49PM: Conyers says that “every single law enforcement organization opposes HR822.” This is a lie.
01:51PM: I think Conyers is senile. He says that Heller upheld restricting carry. It did no such thing. He either didn’t read Heller, or he forgot what it was really about.
01:53PM: Speaking in favor of HR822 is Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH)
01:54PM: Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) is speaking out against, saying that the Congress needs to focus on jobs. Notes that it’s a waste of time. Blah blah blah, it’ll override our laws, blah blah blah. Yeah, that’s the idea. He brings up that it’ll allow child molesters to carry guns, and that they rejected his amendment. Isn’t child molestation a felony? I’m pretty sure Jerry Sandusky won’t be able to own or carry guns again.
01:57PM: Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) speaks in favor. He says this is no different than what we do for drivers’ licenses.
02:00PM: Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) is upset his amendment that would have limited the reciprocity only to licenses that could be verified through a database was quashed. Boo hoo.
02:03PM: Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL) notes that the bill really won’t change much for the vast majority of states. This is true. It’ll mostly make a big difference for the states, like CA, HI, MD, NY, NJ and MA, which don’t really recognize the “bear” part of keep and bear, and states like OR and ME which don’t have reciprocity.
02:07PM: Stearns, who is a sponsor of the bill, is now busy debunking the crap floated by Dudley Brown and the National Association of Gun Rights.
02:09PM: Conyers doesn’t like the comparison to drivers’ licenses, saying that there’s a way to check the validity of a driver’s license, but not for a concealed carry permit. This is not true. There is no database of drivers’ license validity.
02:10PM: Now Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) is up, saying it’ll allow drug dealers to carry firearms. This is not true, because federal law would prevent it. It’s illegal to carry a firearm while selling drugs under federal law.
02:12PM: Rep. Steve Austria (R-OH) says he has a concealed carry permit from OH. He is in favor of the legislation. OH has a fairly restrictive reciprocity law, so this would greatly broaden who could carry from other states in OH. Currently OH does not recognize PA licenses.
02:14PM: Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) is noting all the police chiefs organizations opposing the law. HR822 would change little for Virginia, which has a broad reciprocity law already. It’s funny how none of these opponents can name the states which have these supposed “lax standards,” which are causing a “race to the bottom.”
02:17PM: Scott is dragging out debunked studies about guns being blah blah blah times more likely to blah blah blah. Tired crap.
02:18PM: Marlin Stutzman (R-IN) supports the bill. It will change nothing for Indiana, which already has universal recognition. It’ll even recognize foreign permits.
02:19PM: Conyers says that guns kill black people. Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) rises is opposition, even though this won’t change anything for Illinois. He says that the Second Amendment is not unlimited, as mentioned in Heller. He notes there’s no 14th Amendment justification for this law. Quigley is making utterly ridiculous arguments about why this is the case.
02:22PM: Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) rises in opposition to this “dangerous bill,” and is now suddenly very concerned about the 10th Amendment. I’d note he didn’t seem to have any 10th Amendment concerns about forcing everyone to buy health care.
02:26PM: Rep. John Kline (R-MN) also spent a lot of his time debunking Dudley Brown’s crap.
02:27PM: Rep. James Moran (D-VA) says this is an extreme bill. “This is a federal power grab.” You mean just like Obamacare which you voted for? No, of course that isn’t a federal power grab.
02:30PM: Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) acts like this was a tough decision for him, but ultimately MAIG and all the chiefs convinced him not to. Like his support wasn’t a fore drawn conclusion? He seems to suggest you’re too stupid to employ a gun effectively. He notes that New Jersey isn’t Idaho or Montana. He doesn’t want you carrying guns in his state, but he supports the Second Amendment. These people are unbelievable. No, Rep. Pascrell, if you supported the Second Amendment, you’d support this bill. You don’t’ get to have your cake and eat it too.
02:32PM: He’s not lamenting we haven’t had a gun to take guns away from anyone for a long time. But he supports the Second Amendment!
02:33PM: Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) wants HR822 to send a message to the Governor of Illinois that it needs concealed carry.
02:34PM: Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) blah blah blah, jobs. She hates the fact that Florida issues 800,000 carry permits. You know, her accent sounds more New York than Florida to me. This woman doesn’t sounds like she belongs in Florida.
02:37PM: They say that politics is show business for ugly people. It’s true.
02:38PM: Rush Holt (D-NJ) says this is a solution in search of a problem. The problem is I can’t carry in your state Rush. I’d say this is a pretty good solution for that problem.
02:39PM: From the comments “MAIG is mentioned by nearly every democrat. We have found our new enemy. Brady’s are so 90’s.” I agree. Bloomberg is the new face of gun control in the US.
02:40PM: Rep. Dan Lungren (R-CA) might as well scream “10th Amendment.” He’s concerned that the California Legislature will just get rid of concealed carry and go the way of Illinois. I’ll bet you now that none of these anti-gun states will go that route, because there’s too many well connected people in these states that have permits.
02:43PM: I’m only going to cover the opponents of this bill when they make new and ridiculous arguments. The supporters are mostly saying stuff we already know.
02:47PM: Rep. Rob Woodall (R-GA) says he loves the Second Amendment. He’s saying the Second Amendment is already protected. It doesn’t need a federal law to protect carry against state infringement. Sounds like he’s going to vote against this bill. He notes that the Second Amendment is about defeating tyranny. His argument seems to be federalists grounds. Georgians have never liked federal civil rights bills based on the 14th Amendment. I guess some things don’t change if you’re Rep. Woodall.
02:57PM: Now we’re considering amendments. First up is Woodall’s amendment which would preserve state reciprocity agreements. I’m not sure how this would work. Those agreements should still be in place, it’s just federal law would rule.
02:59PM: It looks like Woodall’s Amendment would mean if you’re a state that has a reciprocity law, federal law would have no effect. This would gut HR822 essentially. Woodall is a shit. I’m already tired of listening to his bullshit.
03:05PM: Woodall’s amendment passed on a voice vote, but Smith demanded a recorded vote. It’ll probably fail in a recorded vote.
03:06PM: Now McCarthy is up with her amendment, which will require states to pass enabling legislation before HR822 would apply to them. She’s pretty emphatic that she doesn’t want people carrying that shoulder thing that goes up in her state.
03:08PM: McCarthy says she supports the Second Amendment. I don’t know how she says that with a straight face.
03:10PM: Smith is speaking against McCarthy’s amendment.
03:13PM: McCarthy’s amendment has gone down by voice vote, but she wants a recorded vote.
03:14PM: Now Alcee Hastings (D-FL) has his amendment up, which would exempt states that do not require individuals to apply for and complete a carry permit application at their local law enforcement station. This would, I believe, exempt many states.
03:20PM: Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) notes that he doesn’t understand Hastings amendment, or what it’s for. He’s not the only one.
03:23PM: Hastings amendment passed on voice vote, but a recorded vote was called for. The recorded vote will happen later.
03:24PM: The Jackson-Lee (D-TX) amendment is up, which would create a federal database of carry licenses.
03:25PM: She seems to think that cops are going to die if this amendment doesn’t get passed. She’s just ranting and making almost no sense.
03:28PM: Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) is speaking in opposition, noting that Jackson-Lee’s amendment is completely unnecessary. Says it’s based on the flawed notion that concealed carry permit holders are a danger to public safety.
03:30PM: The eyes have it, but a recorded vote was demanded.
03:31PM: Conyers’ Amendment that would preserve state laws with respect to eligibility has been withdrawn, it seems. We’re on to the Hank Amendment, which would limit the reciprocity to states that met minimum training standards.
03:37PM: Smith notes that Hank’s home state of Georgia does not require training, and thus his amendment would prevent Georgians from enjoying the benefits of HR822.
03:40PM: The eyes have it on Hank Amendment. Recorded vote was demanded. Note the voice voters here are meaningless. There are just more anti-gun folks in the chamber now. It won’t necessarily reflect the recorded vote.
03:41PM: Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) has his amendment up now, which would exempt any person who is not 21 from enjoying reciprocity under HR822.
03:44PM: Cohen seems to think that 18-20 year olds are just too criminally inclined to be trusted to carry a gun. How many of the 18-2o year old criminals bother to get permits to carry?
03:46PM: Rep. Gowdy (R-SC) is standing up for the rights of 18-20 year olds to carry, noting that they seem to handle carrying guns in the military just fine. He also notes that many states have agreements already and recognize 18-20 year olds on those reciprocal permits. “Why are we treating the Second Amendment here as if it belongs in the constitutional trash heap?” Gowdy notes in an argument with Cohen.
03:50PM: The no’s have it. Recorded vote is demanded.
03:51PM: Jackson-Lee’s next amendment is up, that would require 24 hour notice to a law enforcement officer of the state of the intention to possess or carry a concealed handgun. This is the dumbest, most useless amendment of the lot. Not surprising, because Jackson-Lee is crazy.
03:54PM: I like Gowdy’s comparison to other constitutional rights. He’s pointing out how utterly stupid this amendment is. He wants to know how it’s going to make anyone safer, given criminals don’t generally call ahead to law enforcement to the states where they intend to commit crimes.
03:56PM: “GUNS KILL!” says Jackson-Lee, who seems to think that databases stop people from shooting police officers.
03:58PM: She notes the “Ghost of the NRA” is behind this bill, riding in to Congress to kill children, or something.
03:59PM: Her amendment went down in a voice vote. Recorded vote was called for.
03:59PM: Now Cecilline (D-RI) is up with his amendment, which would basically render HR822 worthless, as it would require the state AG, head of the state police, and Secretary of State to jointly certify other states they will recognize. This would change nothing in regards to reciprocity, which is his idea.
04:01PM: I don’t know what he’s worried about. It only takes 20 minutes to drive through Rhode Island. Most out of staters won’t be spending much time there.
04:02PM: Smith is back up, opposing the amendment, saying it would allow states to opt out, which undermines the goal of national uniformity.
04:03PM: The ayes have it. Recorded vote called for. Politics is such Kabuki Theater. One more amendment, then we can move on to something that matters.
04:07PM: Rep. Reichert (R-WA) has his amendment up. This one would require a GAO study on the verifiability of permits by out-of-state concealed firearm permit holders. This is the last amendment. This amendment might make it. If there’s anything politicians like it’s studies, and it often makes sense to do this kind of stuff to pick up votes.
04:11PM: Conyers is asking for some clarification. Conyers wants the study to happen before the law goes into effect. It’s worth nothing, on this issue of verifiability, that there is no central database of drivers’ licenses. The databases only have people who have had revocations or have been convicted of serious traffic offense like DUI. There would never need to be a database of every concealed carry licenses made to satisfy this concern.
04:15PM: The ayes have it on the Richert Amendment. No recorded vote is called for, so it’s a done deal.
04:15PM: Now onto a recorded vote. I’m going to open up a new post for the voting.