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Failed:To Use PATRIOT ACT For Guncontrol?

In the wake of a Government Accountability Office report that 247 people on the FBI’s terror watch list were permitted to purchase guns last year, Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Chicago) proposed an amendment to the PATRIOT Act that would prevent anyone on a terror list from buying a firearm. Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee voted down Quigley’s amendment yesterday, arguing “that restricting sales to people on the watch list would violate the Second Amendment rights of those placed on the list by mistake.” After you get your jaw off the floor, read Quigley’s justification for his amendment:

“Surely, we cannot look our constituents in the eye and tell them in good faith that we have decided to enact public policy that restrains some of their civil liberties for the greater good but that we refused to ask the same of suspected terrorists. I know we are smarter than that.”

And then the testimony from Paul Helmke of the Brady Campaign:

“Osama bin Laden is dead, but the war on terror is far from over,” Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said in a statement. “How can the Congress pretend to be serious about protecting the nation from terrorism, while voting to allow known terrorists to buy guns?”

Here’s the problem with calling everyone on the FBI’s watch list a “terrorist”: Many of them aren’t. -[source]

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