Rep. Gaetz Calls Out Dems for Blocking Provision Requiring ICE Notification When Illegals Fail Gun Background Check

By Melanie Arter | February 26, 2019 | 7:23pm EST
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) (Screenshot)

( – House Democrats’ rejection of a Republican proposal to add to gun control legislation a provision requiring that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) be notified when an illegal immigrant fails a background check when trying to get a gun is proof that the Democrats’ push for gun control “isn’t really about public safety, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) said Tuesday.

“The Democrats’ anti-Second Amendment legislation is repugnant to the Constitution. It lacks common sense, and it fails to protect vulnerable people,” said Gaetz, who joined fellow House GOP lawmakers Tuesday in calling for the rejection of two gun control bills - Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019 (H.R. 8) and Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2019 (H.R. 1112).

Gaetz took issue specifically with the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019 (H.R. 8), which requires a background check for every firearm sale.

“It is not common sense to say that if an illegal alien fails a background check that we wouldn’t notify ICE, but when Republicans offered these common sense changes to the Democrats’ legislation, they rejected them, because they hate ICE so much that they wouldn’t even want ICE to know to remove someone from the country who is trying to buy a gun illegally,” he said.

“That highlights that this isn’t really about public safety. It’s about the bloodlust the Democrats have to take away guns from law-abiding citizens,” the congressman said.

House Republicans say the bills will only punish law-abiding gun owners by creating a gun registry and preventing a legal gun owner from loaning their gun to someone else to protect themselves. It also wouldn’t actually prevent the types of mass shootings that have become prevalent lately, they said.

“Their legislation also fails to protect vulnerable people. If someone has gone to a judge and received a protective order to stop an abuser from coming in their proximity, the Democrats’ legislation would stop someone from loaning that person a gun if they were in fear of some sort of violence by an abuser,” said Gaetz.


Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) said House Republicans have “serious concerns” about both bills, because Democrats are putting the bills on the floor “under the guise of saying that they’re going to address issues related to gun violence.”

“Neither one of these bills would have done anything to stop some of the tragedies that we’ve seen, but what they would do is very clearly prevent law-abiding citizens from having access to firearms, and what these bills would do, frankly, is create a situation where the exchange of weapons – being able to lend your weapon, private firearms sales – would not be allowed, and then you would see this is the first step towards the creation of some sort of a federal gun registry,” she said.

“Even though the bill says they won’t be doing that, we would see as these bills – if they were to pass and become law – a situation where they couldn’t be enforced ultimately without a federal gun registry,” Cheney said.

Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), ranking member on Judiciary Committee, said, “H.R. 8 is taking the fears and the concerns of a nation over gun violence and perpetrating a fraud upon them. They’re preying upon the very victims they’re wanting to supposedly help by putting a bill out there that will not help them.”

Furthermore, Collins said nothing in the bill would prevent a mass shootings like the one at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

“The reality is nothing in this bill would have stopped Parkland. Nothing in this bill would have stopped any of the other violence that we would have seen coming forward. The problem with this bill is – and now they’ve just exposed it for themselves is – is the Obama administration’s Department of Justice said, if you’re going to at least try universal background checks, you have to have a registry,” he said.


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