Gov. Kasich issues more executive orders demanding government do what it's already supposed to be doing
Seven years and nine months into his administration, and still desperately seeking a way to get immediate media attention and future presidential campaign fodder for having done "something" about mass killings, Governor John Kasich (R) has issued two more executive orders intended to make government agencies do the job they're already supposed to be doing.
From the Gongwer News Service:
Expanding training and education and reducing duplicative reporting responsibilities were among the recommendations issued to Gov. John Kasich Monday to strengthen the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
Issued by a working group formed by the governor in April to improve the NICS so that those prohibited from owning firearms are not able to purchase them, a 39-page report resulted in a total of 22 recommendations.
In conjunction with the release of the report, the governor also signed an executive order requiring that certain protection orders and warrants are reported to the Law Enforcement Automated Data System. Another makes the working group permanent.
Gov. Kasich said the report discovered "significant gaps" in the reporting process, some of which will require funding to close.
He also called on the working group to develop an action plan to ensure that its recommendations are carried out.
"Just because you have a rule doesn't mean the rule will be followed," he said.
Indeed, Kasich learned the "government doesn't follow it's own rules" lesson this summer when it was reported that hundreds of courts had ignored his previous executive order on the subject of background checks, issued in April.
From a July Columbus Dispatch report on the results of Kasich's April order:
The directive asked courts to provide information on their use of the National Instant Criminal Background System, or NICS, and what barriers they’ve faced in adding information to the database.
Hundreds of courts — including 87 of 88 courts of common pleas and all but 12 of 164 municipal and county courts — provided the requested self-evaluation, according to survey results obtained by The Associated Press Tuesday through a public records request.
But 214 courts in 63 Ohio counties were listed as non-responsive.
It is worth noting that Kasich's April order came after the Cincinnati Enquirer reported that hundreds or perhaps even thousands of felons in Ohio could still be allowed to pass a background check to purchase a firearm, all because dozens of Ohio courts are delinquent - sometimes by months or even years - in their responsibility to upload some paperwork. This has been going on under Gov. Kasich's watch for two entire terms.
The April order, ignored by so many Ohio courts, also required the Office of Criminal Justice Services to issue a report on compliance and barriers that may exist. It also called on the state auditor's office to include compliance with NICS reporting in audits of local public offices. Again, from the Gongwer News Service:
When announced, the Buckeye Firearms Association said it had no problem with enforcing current law. However, Executive Director Dean Rieck said the BFA would fight hard to prevent the governor's gun proposals (HB 585 & SB 288) from becoming law.
Nonetheless, Gov. Kasich on Monday again called for their passage.
Government officials at every level - from the Broward County Sheriff to the FBI - failed in their duties to prevent the killer from carrying out his acts in Parkland, FL.
Government and existing gun control laws failed to stop a man who murdered people in a Nashville Waffle House less than a year after he was arrested for breaching a barrier the White House and demanding to speak with President Trump.
Government and existing gun control laws failed to stop a man from obtaining a gun and carrying out an attack at Fifth Third Bank in Cincinnati earlier this month.
As if this weren't enough, Kasich's antics continue to highlight the fact that government is failing us - right under his nose.
If the government is not doing their job now, why is yet another law going to make them do their job?
As Ohio Rep. Wes Retherford, R-Hamilton, observed on April 25, “The executive branch is charged with enforcing the laws. The governor should already have answers as to why this data isn’t being reported and what is needed to correct it. Instead he just wants reports and recommendations.”
Yet the governor and other responsible parties in government are all-too eager to blame and punish law-abiding gun owners who had absolutely nothing to do with these sick acts.
There should be no more talk of laws which only punish the law-abiding - including HB 585 and SB 288, gun control bills being pushed by Gov. Kasich.
There should be no talk of mandating government control over private sales of guns between individuals.
Instead, those who are truly seeking to make a difference should focus their efforts on ensuring that government entities consistently, accurately, regularly input their data into the national database, and enacting and enforcing penalties on those who don't.
Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary and an NRA-certified firearms instructor. He is co-founder of BFA-PAC, and served as its Vice Chairman for 15 years. He is the editor of BuckeyeFirearms.org, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website.