John Kerry and the 2nd Amendment

Discussion in 'The Constitutional & RKBA Forum' started by Marlin, Aug 23, 2004.

  1. Marlin

    Marlin *TFF Admin Staff Chief Counselor*

    Mar 27, 2003
    At SouthernMoss' side forever!
    John Kerry`s Voting Record on Second Amendment Issues

    His voting record makes John F. Kerry the most anti-gun Presidential nominee in United States history. Since his election to the U.S. Senate in 1984, John F. Kerry has cast 59 votes (NRA did not score 4 of them) on issues involving firearms rights and hunting. These votes included votes to ban guns, to impose waiting periods on gun buyers, to financially punish gun manufactures for operating a legal business and to restrict the free speech of Second Amendment advocates.

    In addition, Kerry currently is a co-sponsor of S. 1431, which would ban all semi-automatic shotguns, all detachable-magazine semi-automatic rifles and many other guns, calling the whole lot "assault weapons."

    Following are highlights of those votes that demonstrate Kerry`s unwavering record of opposition to gun owners` rights.


    In a 20-year career, Kerry voted with gun owners only four times, and each of those votes comes with qualifications. He voted:

    1) against a bill NRA opposed for final passage only after Kerry helped sabotage the bill by adding anti-gun amendments (S. 1805)

    2) for a non-biding sense of the Senate motion that had no actual impact (S. 2521 in 2000)

    3) for a study of "armor piecing" ammunition—a vote he made moot a few minutes later by voting for a broad ban of center-fire rifle ammunition (Votes 27 and 28 in 2004 on S. 1805)

    4) to allow airline pilots to carry firearms (vote 210 in 2002 on HR 5005).

    In all, he cast only one real vote for gun owners` rights, and it in support of a narrow group of people charged with responsibility for the safety of others.

    Comparing Kerry`s votes to other well known anti-gun Senators who have served with him shows:

    1) he voted with Ted Kennedy on all but three votes, and only one of those three had any impact—the vote to arm pilots.

    2) he voted with Charles Schumer, the leading anti-gun voice in the Senate, on all but one vote, and that was the non-binding sense of the Senate motion mentioned above (Senate vote 1030).

    3) Kerry has a much more anti-gun record than 2000 Democrat Presidential candidate, Al Gore, Jr., who cast votes on 12 key issues before becoming part of the most anti-gun administration in history. Gore voted to protect Second Amendment rights five times on votes related to passage of the Firearms Owners` Protection Act and once to stop a semi-auto ban. Kerry opposed gun owners in each instance.

    Gun Bans

    Kerry has voted on nine separate occasions on issues directly related to banning semi-auto firearms. In 1990 he voted three times to support a ban on semi-autos. He was one of only 17 to vote for Howard Metzenbaum`s amendment to S. 1970, that would have banned not only a list of specific firearms but would have banned any firearms similar to those specified. On two other occasions, Kerry voted to support Dennis DeConcini-sponsored legislation to ban nine specific firearms for three years.

    In 1993 Kerry voted for the Dianne Feinstein-sponsored Clinton Gun Ban and further supported the passage of that legislation in 1994 by voting to support the Omnibus Crime bill on three key votes. Finally, in 2004 he voted to reauthorize the Clinton Gun Ban.

    Ammunition Ban

    Kerry voted in 2004 to ban most center-fire rifle ammunition, including the most common rounds used by target shooters and hunters. Kerry voted in support of Ted Kennedy`s amendment to S. 1805 that would have banned rifle ammunition capable of penetrating soft body armor. Congress has repeatedly rejected such a "performance-based" approach.

    Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs)

    Kerry voted in 1985 to allow BATF to conduct unlimited warrant-less inspections of FFL holders. Well-documented and shocking BATF abuses of license holders were a primary reason the Firearms Owners` Protection Act was introduced in Congress and signed into law by President Reagan. Kerry was one of only 18 Senators to vote to allow such abuses—which liberal Democrat Congressman John Dingell called the acts of "jack-booted fascists"—to continue.

    In 1993 Kerry was one of 30 Senators who supported an amendment to H.R. 2403 that would have increased the fee for a FFL by more than 37 times. The result of this amendment would have been to force many small or part-time firearms dealers out of business. This would have had a significant impact on both the availability and price of firearms particularly in rural areas of the nation.

    Campaign Finance Reform

    Kerry consistently supported passage of campaign finance "reform" legislation. NRA consistently and vigorously opposed such efforts to prohibit the exercise of free speech during the crucial weeks leading up to elections. Kerry voted in 1996 and 1997 for legislation that failed to win final passage and voted in 2001 for S. 27, the bill that became law.

    When NRA announced it was considering acquiring a television or radio outlet and seeking the same exemption from campaign finance rules that news organizations have, Kerry sent the Federal Election Commission a letter urging the commission "to prevent the NRA from hijacking America`s airwaves with the gun lobby`s money." (Associated Press, Dec. 9, 2003)

    Civilian Marksmanship Program

    Kerry voted twice to eliminate the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP). In 1993 he voted in support of an amendment to eliminate its funding, and in 1996 he voted to abolish the CMP`s successor, the Corporation for the Promotion of Rifle Practice and Safety, a federally chartered civilian marksmanship program.

    Mandatory Storage

    Kerry twice supported legislation that would have mandated the inclusion of trigger locks with any handgun sale. In 1998 he supported the Barbara Boxer amendment to S. 2260, and in 1999 he voted for the Herb Kohl amendment to S. 254. Both required that trigger locks be included with all handgun sales. In 1998 he voted against Larry Craig`s amendment to S. 2260 that would have recognized that gun locks are not the only method to safely store a firearm by simply requiring the availability of gun locks, but would have left the choice of the best safety method to the individual gun buyer.

    Gun Shows

    On a number of different occasions, Kerry has voted to regulate gun shows by imposing a background check requirement on private gun owners that goes beyond the requirements for FFL holders operating in a gun store. Kerry twice voted in 1999 to require that all gun sales at a gun show go through an FFL holder. That legislation would have allowed authorities up to three days to conduct the checks, threatening the operation of gun shows, which are typically two-day, weekend events. Kerry placed two additional votes supporting passage of this legislation.

    In 2004 Kerry again voted to regulate gun shows by mandating background checks on guns sold by private individuals at gun shows, again allowing up to three days to complete the check.


    Kerry voted in 1994 to close off 1,181,000 acres of California`s Mojave Desert to hunting. He supported a proposal to designate tens of thousands of acres of the Mojave desert as a national park, where hunting would have been prohibited. He voted against a proposal to make the area a national monument which would have allowed hunting to continue.

    Kerry, unlike 56 of his fellow Senators, is not a member of the Congressional Sportsmen`s Caucus. With more than 300 members in the House and Senate, it is one of the largest Caucuses in the U.S. Congress, and is "open to Congressmen and Senators who are sportsmen or who support the concept of sustained use and wildlife management, even if they do not themselves take to the fields and waters to fish, hunt or trap."

    Firearms Owners` Protection Act (FOPA)

    In 1985 Kerry was one of only 26 Senators to support a Kennedy amendment to FOPA to continue the ban on the interstate sale of handguns to law-abiding Americans. He also was one of only 15 Senators who voted against final passage of FOPA, a bill designed to specifically protect the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun owners by removing the ban on interstate sales of rifles and shotguns, curtail BATF abuses of FFL holders by limiting the number of routine inspections and other provisions. Magazine Bans,

    On two occasions, first in 1998 and again in 1999, Kerry voted to ban the importation of high- capacity magazines. On both occasions he voted to support a Feinstein amendment to block importation of magazines manufactured before the ban on these magazines was implemented in 1994. He also voted for the 1993 Crime Bill, that included the ban on these magazines.

    Gun Law Prosecutions and Penalties

    Kerry voted in 1999 against an amendment to the Juvenile Justice bill that called for increased mandatory minimum and maximum penalties for the illegal transfer or use of a firearm. Instead of supporting this legislation that focused its impact on criminals, Kerry supported broad regulation of law-abiding gun buyers.

    In contrast, the year before Kerry voted to impose excessive penalties of a year in prison and a $10,000 fine on an adult if a juvenile gains access to their firearm, even by theft, and then merely displays it in a public place.

    Reckless Lawsuits

    In 2004 Kerry returned from the campaign trail for the first time that year to cast votes against gun owners and to argue against the passage of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. This bill would have protected gun manufacturers from the politically motivated lawsuits that are being filed with the intent of bankrupting the industry. The bill was defeated after it was amended to include renewal of the Clinton Gun Ban and gun show regulation, both supported by Kerry.

    In 2000 Kerry was one of only 29 Senators to vote to prohibit gun manufactures from discharging debts created by the reckless lawsuits filed by municipalities. This move was a clear attack on the viability of gun manufacturers, designed to punish them even as they continued to win in court.

    Waiting Periods

    Kerry has consistently supported the imposition of a waiting period on gun purchases. In 1985 he voted to require a national 14-day wait. In 1991 he voted for a 7-day wait, and in 1992 he supported a 5- day wait. He also voted in 1993 to specifically allow the continuation of state waiting periods after the advent of the National Instant Check system (NICS), and he voted to strike the sunset of the federal waiting period after implementation of NICS. In all, Kerry voted 11 times to force law-abiding citizens to wait to exercise their Second Amendment rights..

    Other Issues

    • Kerry denounced NRA`s successful efforts to eliminate monies being spent by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to advance gun control policies. (Boston Herald, Aug. 14, 1996)

    • Voted against the confirmation of John Ashcroft.

    • Voted to spend $15 million intended for housing programs on ineffective gun buy-back programs.

    • Voted to commend the Million Mom March in 2000 for their march on Washington that included calls for gun owner licensing, gun registration and other restrictions on law-abiding gun owners.

    Posted: 8/23/2004
  2. Greg

    Greg New Member

    Feb 10, 2004
    New Mexico
    Thanks for the reminder Marlin.

    If Kerry is elected, there is no doubt that the gun ban will pass again with even more controls and restrictions than before. The Democrats voting record on gun control is clear, even with strong grassroots feedback to the contrary. While he appears to flip-flop on many issues, his record on this issue is clear. Even though he "flip-flops", he personally has an agenda of which he already knows clearly, but just isn't sharing. Much of what he would like to see change will involve changing our judicial representation, and in allowing international influences and "think tanks" to direct our way of life, and our current rights, that many have paid for dearly. And you thought The Manchurian Candidate was only a movie?

    On the other hand, if the gun ban reaches GWB's desk, I have no doubt that he would sign it as well. So what's up with this picture? Whoever leads our country is sworn to uphold the constitution. So nine supreme court people, influenced by our current media and polls are going to decide that for us? Scarey.

    If we do not continue with a strong grassroots effort, and stay actively involved, our constitution is at risk regardless of who will end up leading our country. It just might become bad rather than poor if we are not diligent. Any ounce of freedom that is lost will be replaced by a pound of socialistic bureaucracy with less emphasis on personal responsibility and accountability.

    VOTE, and make yourself heard while also demanding support from your representatives! Nobody else is going to do it for you.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2004
  3. Huck Finn

    Huck Finn Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    We all have to realize one thing. When John Kerry cast those votes, he was a representative (Senator) for the people of Massachusetts. His job was to take the opinions of his constituents to Washington and to try to turn them into law. If he had voted any other way, he would have been doing a dis-service to the people who elected him. If he is elected President, he'll be representing a new group of people, the whole country. It is OUR job to let him know how his new constituents feel & to ask that he represent us as well as he did the people of Massachusetts. Don't rag on the guy for doing his job the way all of our representatives should!
  4. Greg

    Greg New Member

    Feb 10, 2004
    New Mexico
    A good point Huck. He is representing his state on this 2nd amendment issue. Well, on gun control anyhow. He chose not to even be present to represent them more than 65% of the time on many other issues in his job-absent (about on par with his attendance on the Senate Intelligence Committee). He did make sure to take time out from his campaign to vote on this issue though. So is he representing the issues of his state, or more interested in supporting the top five anti-gun democrats that he counts on for support and rubs elbows with?

    Here is the crime info for his state. Let's see, how long has he been representing them? Check out the crime for 1960-1980, and then see what happened 1980-2000. Are his people safer? About the only thing safer is people getting their car stolen.
    Crime rates

    Here are the gun control laws there. By the way, the ones he would like to see throughout the U.S. (at a minimum). A perfect example about that "pound of socialistic bureaucracy". I'm going to have a lock on my gun at home to protect myself when someone breaks in, and need a license to have the right to protect myself to boot? NOT! Like they say, "a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there".
    Gun laws

    Here is the real scoop on what Kerry thinks about the 2nd amendment, no matter who he is "representing".
    The real scoop on Kerry and the 2nd amendment

    This is not ragging, these are facts, and this is not the way I want my representatives to do their job. However, I do respect your right to your opinion, and appreciate your participation on this forum, along with everyone elses.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2004
  5. Marlin

    Marlin *TFF Admin Staff Chief Counselor*

    Mar 27, 2003
    At SouthernMoss' side forever!
    Great reference and I'm glad to have it all in one place. [Wayne LaPierre's article on Kerry's Gun Agenda.]

    It is just plain terrifying to think about an "Edward Kennedy" mindset being in the White House with that agenda.
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