- ISIL creates all-female brigade to terrorize women into following Sharia law
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- Obama to Latin leaders: Help with border
- Military bans troops from Baptist church event honoring ‘God’s Rescue Squad’
- ‘Pocket drones’: U.S. Army developing tiny surveillance tools for the next big war
- Belgian cafe posts sign: Dogs allowed, but Jews stay out
- Gen. Dempsey: Pentagon studying Russian readiness plans not viewed ‘for 20 years’
- John McCain: Botched, two-hour execution of murderer is ‘torture’
- House GOP ready to move border bill
- Bomb squad called after live WWII artillery washes on Cape Cod beach
MILLER: House votes to exempt military from D.C. gun laws
Question of the Day
The House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution Friday that expresses the sense of Congress that active duty military living or stationed in the District of Columbia should have the right to carry a gun.
The measure sponsored by Rep. Phil Gingrey, Georgia Republican, was passed by voice vote as part of the National Defense Authorization Act, which authorizes the Pentagon’s budget for 2014. Mr. Gingrey has followed my series on active-duty veterans who have been thrown in jail for mere possession of unregistered guns or ammunition.
First Lieutenant Augustine Kim, Sgt. Matthew Corrigan and Spc. Adam Meckler were all arrested in D.C. in the last couple years for inadvertently violating the city’s unique laws, set in place after Heller in order to dissuade legal gun ownership.
“Our servicemen and women are highly-trained, highly-skilled, and the most professional fighting force in the world,” Gingrey said after the vote about those cases. "That this could happen to our veterans is a travesty. I will continue fighting to protect our Second Amendment rights."
The resolution says that the 40,000 active duty servicemen and women in Washington deserve a waiver from the city’s “onerous and highly restrictive laws on the possession of firearms.” In December, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Illinois had to allow carry rights s in the state. The legislature passed a statute earlier this month creating a permitting process, which the governor has yet to sign. Nevertheless, the process has left the nation’s capital as the one remaining jurisdiction in America where the right to bear arms is not recognized.
The House passed this nonbinding resolution last year while I was running a high-profile series on Lt. Augustine Kim, who was arrested while legally transporting his guns through D.C. He took a plea deal, which eventually cleared his record, but the police refused to return his guns. Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican, read my account and called Police Chief Cathy Lanier and demanded the guns be returned to the veteran of the war in Afghanistan.
The House passed the Gingrey amendment on the day in May 2012 that Lt. Kim’s attorney, Richard Gardiner, and I went to the Metropolitan Police Department’s evidence building for a hearing on the stolen guns. The vote demonstrated Congress’s frustration with absurd situation in which a member of the armed forces, whose job is to carry a gun, is thrown in jail for doing so.
D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton freaked out at the vote last year, saying that, “We will fight every attack on our rights as a local government, particularly when we are singled out for unique treatment.”
Ms. Holmes should be on notice that as long as the District of Columbia refuses to recognize the constitutional right to bear arms, she and other officials will be singled out for unique treatment by good members of Congress.
About the Author
Emily Miller is senior editor of opinion for The Washington Times. She is the author of “Emily Gets Her Gun … But Obama Wants to Take Yours” (Regnery 2013). Miller won the 2012 Clark Mollenhoff Award for Investigative Reporting from the Institute on Political Journalism.
- MILLER: Mark Witaschek tax investigation follows D.C. conviction for muzzleloader bullet ammunition
- MILLER: Harry Reid's hypocrisy on 'Equal Pay Day': No women on top leadership staff
- MILLER: Maryland bathroom bill for transgenders is part of LGBT lobby for sex-change rights
- MILLER: Mark Witaschek surrenders to D.C. police 'Gun Offenders Registry'
- MILLER: Michelle Obama has media blackout in China while touting freedom of press
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
President wants everyone but himself to pay more
Get Breaking Alerts
- U.S. evacuates embassy in Libya amid violent clashes between militias
- 'Pocket drones': U.S. Army developing tiny spies for the next big war
- Rahm Emanuel: Send illegal immigrant shelter kids to Chicago
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Obama: U.S. should 'embrace an economic patriotism that says we rise or fall together'
- Ted Nugent loses second casino gig for 'racist remarks'
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- EDITORIAL: Obama's 'economic patriotism' means higher taxes