Conn. governor says he’ll ban gun buys by people on federal watch lists

11 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Conn. Governor Will Ban Anybody On Terrorism Watch Lists From Buying Guns.

A week after the mass shooting in San Bernardino, Calif., the gun-control debate has reopened, this time with renewed focus placed on the availability of guns to people currently being monitored by the United States government for possible terrorist connections. Daniel Malloy announced Thursday that he will issue an executive order banning anybody on federal terrorism watch lists from buying a gun in the state. “We intend to prevent, by executive order through my powers as governor, those on government watch lists from obtaining a permit to purchase a firearm in Connecticut,” Malloy said at a Thursday press conference. “If Congress will not act, we in the states will.” Under his planned order, anybody on the lists would be barred from purchasing either guns or ammunition. This is a moment to seize in America — and today I’m here to say that we in Connecticut are seizing it.” Malloy said he is responding to the fatal terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California. It’s not clear how many people the executive order will affect, but there are about 47,000 people on the federal government’s no-fly list and about a million people on the terrorism watch list (though many of these are not U.S. citizens or even residents).

The American people get it.” The Legislature and Malloy previously enacted gun limits that expanded the state’s assault weapons ban and barred the possession and sale of large-capacity ammunition magazines following the Dec. 14, 2012, shooting deaths of 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Another is the fact that there is no way to prevent someone who is not a terrorist from inadvertently ending up on the list, as happened to former Sen. U.S. authorities have said that one of the shooters, Tashfeen Malik, posted a message on her Facebook page declaring her allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State extremist group, the same day she and her husband, Syed Rizwan Farook, carried out the shooting. There’s also the matter of the Second Amendment, which protects the right to bear arms, and the Fifth Amendment, which prohibits depriving individuals of liberty or property without due process.

State officials will determine the “appropriate lists” to be included, whether they are no-fly lists or “some kind of combination of those who should not have weapons,” Malloy said. (TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. This has prompted officials in Connecticut to take steps to restrict the ability of individuals on the no-fly list to purchase guns, ahead of what they perceive as Congress’s inaction.

Eugene Volokh, a professor of constitutional law who blogs for The Washington Post, has been very critical of efforts to roll back gun rights in this manner. “Most of the time this would come into play only as to people for whom the government doesn’t have proof of terrorist activity,” Volokh wrote last week. “If the government had proof, presumably the people would be prosecuted … I can’t see how that’s constitutional.” Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. And, they say, such a policy would deny people a right – conferred in the Constitution – to keep and bear arms, based solely on a suspicion of wrongdoing, not proof. If you have a constitutional right to do something, the government has to do more than just provide the attorney general’s suspicion and speculation as a basis for denying you that right. Presumably, in order to have standing, a plaintiff would first have to be denied a gun as a result of the policy, i.e., because he or she is on a terrorist watch list.

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