In light of today's federal district court ruling upholding the District of Columbia's gun registration requirements, which follows a federal appellate court ruling upholding D.C.'s ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) called on Representatives Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Phil Gingrey (R-GA) to withdraw support for bills they introduced this Congress to overturn D.C. gun laws. Jordan, who has introduced only four bills this Congress, introduced a bill, focused on one local jurisdiction, that would eliminate all of the District's gun safety laws, repudiated today as to the city's registration requirements. Gingrey introduced a bill that would express the sense of Congress that active duty military personnel in their private capacity should be exempt from the gun safety laws of the District of Columbia, but not those of any other state or locality. Gingrey added his bill as an amendment to the House-passed version of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014, but Norton got it removed from the enacted bill.
"The District's new gun laws keep winning in court, even though they are strong gun safety laws in keeping with the needs of a big, complicated city and our role as the nation's capital with many high-level officials and visitors from all over the country and the world," said Norton. "It's time for Representatives Jordan and Gingrey to finally recognize that their D.C. gun bills violate their own stated principles of local control of local affairs. Republicans fight every day to reduce the power of the federal government and devolve power to the states and localities. When it comes to the District's local laws, however, their hypocrisy knows no bounds."
Jordan's bill not only would wipe out the city's current gun safety laws, it would make the District one of the most permissive gun jurisdictions in the country, because it would permit: the carrying of guns in public; repeal D.C.'s ban on large capacity ammunition feeding devices (i.e., magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds); repeal D.C.'s ban on assault weapons, including .50 caliber rifles; bar D.C. from prohibiting guns in District owned or controlled buildings and structures that do not have certain security measures in place, which could include elementary schools and recreation centers; repeal D.C.'s categories of prohibited possessors (for example, a person who was voluntarily committed to a mental institution could buy a gun); prevent D.C. from making changes to its gun laws in the future; create the only exception to federal law by permitting D.C. residents to make handgun purchases in person outside their place of residency, in this case, in Maryland and Virginia; repeal D.C.'s gun registration requirements; repeal D.C.'s limitation on the number of handguns that can be purchased per month; repeal D.C.'s 10-day waiting period to buy handguns or rifles (there would only be a 48-hour waiting period for handguns); repeal D.C.'s gun training requirements; repeal D.C.'s design safety standards for handguns; and reduce penalties if a child is injured by a negligently stored gun; and prevent the city from barring private tenants of city owned or controlled buildings and structures from bringing guns into them, regardless of the security measures in place.