The NRA tries to rewrite history over background checks


Methinks she doth protest too much:

"I've been talking about this for a couple of years now and the last time I brought this up on television as a real problem I was screamed at and shouted down," former NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch tweeted late Tuesday, including a link to WRAL's story. "We going to take it seriously yet?"

Current NRA officials didn't repond to a request for comment Wednesday.

She was actually screamed at by some other Fox & Friends idiot, but I don't have the patience or intestinal fortitude to go down that rabid rabbit hole. The truth is, shortly before the NICS database came online, the NRA pushed the Conservative U.S. Supreme Court to undermine the entire system:

The Brady Act, passed in 1993, established the federal system that screens firearm purchases at licensed dealers. While the FBI built its high-tech NICS system, local police were tasked with conducting the background checks.

However, the NRA teamed up with local sheriffs in Montana and Arizona to challenge the law, saying local law enforcement shouldn't be forced to work for the feds.

In 1997, the Supreme Court sided with the NRA and Ravalli County Sheriff Jay Printz of Montana. Justice Antonin Scalia wrote the court's opinion, which was largely driven by the concepts of federalism. The Constitution's 10th Amendment limited the federal government power over state and local governments, the court decided.

When the FBI finally got the NICS system up and running in 1998, states submitted criminal and mental health records only voluntarily. Now, decades later, it's still optional.

Just one more reason to be relieved that Antonin Scalia is no longer stinking up that place. A few excerpts from the opinion he bungled:

(c) The Constitution's structure reveals a principle that controls these cases: the system of "dual sovereignty." See, e.g., Gregory v. Ashcroft, 501 U.S. 452, 457. Although the States surrendered many of their powers to the new Federal Government, they retained a residuary and inviolable sovereignty that is reflected throughout the Constitution's text. See, e.g., Lane County v. Oregon, 7 Wall. 71, 76. The Framers rejected the concept of a central government that would act upon and through the States, and instead designed a system in which the State and Federal Governments would exercise concurrent authority over the people. The Federal Government's power would be augmented immeasurably and impermissibly if it were able to impress into its service--and at no cost to itself--the police officers of the 50 States. Pp. 18-22.

(d) Federal control of state officers would also have an effect upon the separation and equilibration of powers between the three branches of the Federal Government itself. The Brady Act effectively transfers the President's responsibility to administer the laws enacted by Congress, Art. II, §§2 and 3, to thousands of CLEOs in the 50 States, who are left to implement the program without meaningful Presidential control. The Federal Executive's unity would be shattered, and the power of the President would be subject to reduction, if Congress could simply require state officers to execute its laws. Pp. 22-23.

Okay, aside from the fact that even local police are bound to act when they detect a violation of Federal Statute, that second section (d) reveals just how ignorant of irony Scalia was. The Brady Act only existed because some crazy jackass shot President Reagan (and 3 others) before he was subdued. To posit that undermining this legislation actually "helps" the President of the United States is just...Well, it's Antonin Scalia-level crazy.