The Golden State Gun Control Honor Roll Recipient Fall from Grace

While I was preparing dinner for Sebastian’s birthday celebration with family, more details broke about the accusations against anti-gun California Senator Leeland Yee. The charges that were initially only described as bribery and corruption now reveal his alleged ties to gun running operations. The hypocrisy is so extreme that even the mainstream media is taking notice and opening their stories with the fact that a gun control advocate has been arrested on charges related to facilitating illegal gun sales.

Twitchy is having some fun going back through Sen. Yee’s tweets on gun control sent as the man was allegedly working to help out organized crime networks get more guns into the country illegally.

Through Cam Edwards, we see that Sen. Yee’s website still touts himself as an honoree of The Brady Campaign that held a reception to honor him as a “Gun Violence Prevention Honor Roll” member, according to a press release.

For his commitment to ending gun violence, Assembly Speaker pro Tem Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/Daly City) has been named to the Gun Violence Prevention Honor Roll by the Brady Campaign. The Brady Campaign will honor Yee and other state legislators from throughout the country who earned an A+ for working against gun violence at a reception during the National Conference of State Legislators in Nashville, Tennessee, on Wednesday, August 16, 2006.

I guess it is accurate to describe Sen. Yee as an honor roll worthy politician since he did do his homework. From the indictment against him, you have to give him extra credit for actually knowing the difference between fully automatic firearms and semi-automatic, so that he would (allegedly) make sure to get the right kind of firearms for criminals looking to buy illegally through him.

The Indictment of Leland Yee

Many thanks to Tam for some light reading this morning, with the Leland Yee indictment:

According to SENATOR YEE, the arms dealer had contacts in Russia, Ukraine, Boston and Southern California. UCE 4599 asked SENATOR YEE for his commitment. SENATOR YEE said “Do I think we can make some money? I think we can make some money. Do I think we can get the goods? I think we can get the goods.” SENATOR YEE thought it was more about the timing and who was going to get directly involved. SENATOR YEE said he believed KEITH JACKSON had to be committed to make the deal happen. KEITH JACKSON told SENATOR YEE “I’m in man.”

SENATOR YEE said that he wanted KEITH JACKSON and UCE 4599 to understand what they were about to get into. SENATOR YEE cautioned UCE 4599 and KEITH JACKSON and recounted a story of the last time he was in the Philippines. According to SENATOR YEE, he was surrounded by “armed guards with machine guns.” SENATOR YEE said “Because, I’m getting a little more into this, it’s not just Russia; the Muslim countries have sources too. And so, that has been brought to my attention recently.”

KEITH JACKSON asked UCE 4599 “You know what you want right?” UCE 4599 told SENATOR YEE and KEITH JACKSON he wanted any type of “shoulder fired” weapons or missiles. SENATOR YEE asked UCE 4599 “You know what you want right?” UCE 4599 told SENATOR YEE and KEITH JACKSON he wanted any type of “shoulder fired” weapons or missiles. SENATOR YEE asked UCE4599 if he wanted “automatic weapons” as opposed to semi-automatic weapons. UCE 4599 confirmed with SENATOR YEE he wanted automatic weapons. KEITH JACKSON asked UCE 4599 about the quantity. UCE 4599 told SENATOR YEE and KEITH JACKSON anywhere between $500,000 and $2,500,000 worth of weapons.

Now I know why he supported gun control, because you can’t have ordinary people shooting back at the gangsters. As Uncle pointed out yesterday, the Chicago mob had a lot to do with the gun control laws there. Some of them really do want you disarmed because it’s better to terrorize you that way.

122 Attempts to Stop a Preemption Fix

When an NRA-backed bill to allow citizens to more easily challenge their towns that are passing gun control laws in violation of state law passed a committee vote with a solid, bipartisan vote, we knew that anti-gun advocates would pull out all the stops to try and keep this bill from becoming law.

They do not want their residents to have standing to hold these cities accountable for their violations of state law.

However, even I was a little stunned by the number of amendments already filed to try and stop the bill – 122. I didn’t realize that public accountability of local government was so vehemently opposed by some members of the legislature.

Ruling in US v. Castleman

Dave Hardy is reporting that the Supreme Court has handed down a decision in US v. Castleman. I’d note that this isn’t a Second Amendment case, but rather one of statutory interpretation, regarding the extent of force necessary to trigger the Lautenberg Amendment prohibition. The case was unanimous in outcome, in so far as the conviction was upheld. But the court split on how broad “physical force” was, with the majority agreeing it matched the common law definition of force. So a wife poking at a husband in a heated argument would be sufficient for Lautenberg to Apply. Scalia concurred, but only on narrower grounds, suggesting it had to at least be enough force to at least have the potential of causing injury. Alito and Thomas concurred, and but noted disagreement with the holding in the previous Johnson case, which would seem to be at odds with this holding.

As I said, the Second Amendment wasn’t raised by Castleman, this was a straight up case of statutory interpretation, so I wouldn’t read the tea leaves too much over this one in regards to the future of Second Amendment law.

Antis Clinging to Hope on Chris Christie

This is pretty thin gruel, if you ask me. Gun control folks are really clinging to hope for a Christie signature on the magazine bill.

“It is a very emotional issue on both sides,” said Christie, who is almost certain to have a bill on his desk this spring to sign or veto. “Gun control and the Second Amendment are enormously emotional, combustible issues. My job as governor is to be the adult in the room.”

Come on folks. He might as well have danced a little sidestep with that statement. I hold out the possibility he might sign it, but that statement doesn’t say anything. If he does sign it, he’s finished on the national stage.

Wednesday News Links

Things today may be a bit slow, because I have crossed the threshold and hit the big four oh. Bitter is planning a small celebration which includes cake, and cake is all that matters. So let’s see what’s going on out there:

The Florida Coalition to Stop Gun Violence is protesting the idea that a shooting range will be opening. Remember, it’s raging right-wing paranoia that they want to take our guns. Since they complain civilians aren’t trained enough, then oppose facilities to help us get training, what does that say? Note these folks aren’t some rogue group, they are part of States United.

I do have to say, I would not want to be on Marion Hammer’s shit list. She’s trying to push a limited Constitutional Carry bill, that would allow people to carry without a permit during a Hurricane evacuation. I know of someone who was the victim of an attempted robbery during a Hurricane evac, but thwarted it when he quickly produced a 1911. He kept his gas.

Does Andrew Cuomo have a problem even among Democrats?

What losing looks like.

Anti-gun groups launch a #StandWith Vivek campaign to rescue the AG nomination. NRA will get more than 5000 likes on its Facebook page on a bad day.

I’d need more details about this bill’s exact, but if the reporters are accurate (a stretch) I wouldn’t have rolled over on this bill, which seems to go beyond federal law: “Additionally, abusers against whom an active protective order has been granted would be prohibited from possessing a firearm for 10 years.”

A lot of tea party types get upset that NRA has an incumbent friendly endorsement policy. They’d be foolish not to.

Confusion and delays in SAFE act implementation.

ATF gone wild?

Quite a fight on our hands in Washington State this coming election.

A wholly owned subsidiary.

Our criminal justice system has become a crime.

Filming police should not be a crime.

I’ll say it again: guns do not increase suicide risk. It’s an absurd notion. I am not nor have I ever been, nor will I ever be suicidal. So what’s the risk for me? And if it did come to that, I’d have a damned good reason for it that’s none of anyone else’s damned business.

Additionally, guns in the home are a “none of your damned business” issue, not a health issue. Why, as a society, have we become so tolerant of petulant busybodies?

The devil, you say.

Marko celebrates ten years as an American.


California Gun Owners Enjoy the Day…

Well, the decision on San Francisco laws was unpleasant news late yesterday, but at least California gun owners can be happy that one Second Amendment opponent isn’t quite as likely to be a threat in the future. Sen. Leeland Yee was just arrested on bribery and corruption charges, and the FBI is apparently raiding his offices at the moment.

9th Circuit Upholds Storage Requirement & Hollow Point Ban

The 9th circuit upholds a requirement that guns be locked up. There’s more here over at the Volokh Conspiracy. Once again, I’m disappointed to see Prof. Volokh promoting balancing tests:

The court also upheld a ban on sale of hollow-point bullets, though it stressed that the ban didn’t prohibit possessing or using hollow-points, or bringing them in from neighboring cities. Here, the burden does seem likely to be less than substantial …

Would we argue that a ban on newspapers or books being sold in the city is a less substantial burden, because they could still be bought outside the city and brought in? No, that would be properly ruled unconstitutional. I will repeat that endorsing this kind of burden analysis, even if it is used in other rights, is a green light for the courts to gut any substantive protection, because the courts will always balance in favor of the government. The courts, who have zero expertise in self-defense (very few would have ever taken a course), are in no position to make these calls, and shouldn’t be encouraged to make them. Limiting my magazine size, restricting my access to effective ammunition, and adding precious time between me and my firearm are not light burdens, and shouldn’t be treated as such.

We have to advocate a different approach if we want this right taken seriously. I’m a great fan of Professor Nelson Lund’s approach, on examining police use and practices.

Peruta, New York, Colorado, oh my!

With so much litigation currently up in the air, and some of it having a shot at having a hugely meaningful impact to improve the growth of the pro-gun community, it seems like a good time to remind any lawyers or seriously legal-minded types about the NRA Foundation’s Law Seminar taking place next month at the Annual Meeting in Indianapolis.

I have to say, there’s rarely been a year that I’ve been more excited by the topics – the issue of the new carry law in Illinois, the nail-biting cases in the jurisdictions where we did suffer some setbacks, and the regular topic that I often find oddly interesting – laws dealing with shooting ranges. Peruta, even though I mention it in the title, isn’t specifically on the schedule. However, when you get a bunch of pro-gun legal minds together, it’s pretty much assured that a big game-changing case like that won’t come up in some form.

Remember, attorneys, it can count for CLE credit. For non-attorneys, you never know what you might learn that can keep you out of jail. For example, I should probably warn my horse farm owning cousin that last year, I learned that riding one’s horse at “unusual speed” on any street or alley is a crime in my home state.

Bloomberg’s $600k Pennsylvania Politician

It looks like the Attorney General that Mike Bloomberg bought heavily contributed to in Pennsylvania is having a less than wonderful 2014. This was supposed to be the year that she would release the results of her Penn State “investigation” that would trash Gov. Tom Corbett right before the election – at least, that’s what some observers might think after watching her run on an immediate investigation with promised swift results in 2012 and not having anything to show for it after more than a year. Instead, it may be turning into the year that has investigations could be opening into her handling of political corruption cases.

For those who haven’t been following the general political news in Pennsylvania, Bloomberg’s golden girl who received hundreds in thousands of dollars in advertising during her campaign shut down a long-running undercover sting of politicians that found several Philadelphia-area lawmakers accepting cash and gifts from a lobbyist that they did not disclose. After the report came out, she lawyered up, refused to talk to the press during a meeting, and appears to be hinting at suing the press for even reporting the story that relied on named sources involved in the investigation for daring to run such criticisms of her.

Oh yeah, and it was said she tried to argue that because most of the politicians caught in the investigation up until the point she shut it down happened to be black, the investigation may have been racist. Then, the District Attorney from Philadelphia, who happens to be a black politician himself, stepped up and said that’s a bunch of bull and criticized her for shutting down the sting. Actually, that might be an understatement. Even the media called the criticism from the DA “unusually barbed criticism of a fellow prosecutor and fellow Democrat.”

Today, we learn that she has just gone through her 3rd spokesman in 14 months as the press begins to pile up against her for lawyering up. In addition, a website largely read by people pretty close to Pennsylvania politics ran a reader poll that asked if Kane should have brought charges against those politicians who were already on the record of accepting cash & gifts without reporting them, and a majority said she should have.

Bloomberg’s little Pennsylvania investment just put a big statewide spotlight on Democratic divides in the state, along with a reminder about the political corruption so well known in Philadelphia political circles as we come up in a big election year for the state. I’m not sure that’s what Bloomberg was hoping to get with his donations.