2008 – What lies ahead
By Jim Irvine
As we noted a year ago, “Even though we have pro-gun leaders in the Ohio House, Ohio Senate, and Governor’s mansion, we do not expect this year to be without problems.” Turns out that was an understatement.
The fact that we have not been able to pass a single law to improve our out-dated laws indicates how difficult it can be to pass legislation. We must acknowledge our failures and correct them if we are to get any real improvements this year.
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We must convey to our many friends in the legislature that we have many issues that need to be addressed, and that we expect them to make good progress this year. Because of elections, there will be few days of session, so time is already short.
To help you communicate, we will be starting a series of letters for you to use when contacting your Representative and Senator. Each one will address a single issue. Your help in contacting legislators will send a message that gun owners have been patient long enough and it’s now time to move legislation.
Of course the more people who contact their legislators, the more likely our bills will become a priority. Your help in getting others involved is paramount to our success.
We plan to launch a new website soon. It will allow us to work more efficiently. We will be able to work with volunteers better than in the past to help a candidate or address an issue.
Later this month all those people who obtained their CHL in the first week the law went into effect will be able to renew their licenses. 45,000 licenses will expire this year. There will be problems with the renewals that will cause many people to give up when trying to renew. Now might be a good time to see if you can find your training certificate. Remember, most of the Sheriff’s are on our side. They have a huge burden on the horizon. It helps everyone if you can renew your license early.
While this list is long, there are some things that we must put a priority on fixing. They are:
Of course there are many more things that should be fixed. We need to start somewhere and start making progress. Our success is directly related to your support and involvement. We know our task is not easy, but we also know that when we all work together, we will make real progress.
U.S. Supreme Court
This year the United States Supreme Court will hear arguments in the Heller (formally Parker) case that will establish if the Second Amendment grants an “individual right” or merely a collective right. It will also decide if the rights granted by the Second Amendment apply to homes in the District of Columbia. Buckeye Firearms will be submitting an amicus brief in this crucial case for all gun owners.
President Clinton pushed through his “assault weapons ban” that was terrible for gun owners and did nothing to fight crime. After replacing enemies with friends, we witnessed the “sunset” of the Clinton “Assault Weapons ban.” Elections matter.
We will elect a new President this year. The next few months will deal with the primary elections. There will be national conventions. Once the candidates are decided, both parties will focus on winning the presidency.
While none of Ohio’s statewide officers are up for election this year, all Ohio Representatives and Senators in even numbered districts are up for election. Due to term limits, there will be a lot of new people in the Statehouse next session. To keep the legislature friendly to our cause, we have a lot of work to do.
The presidential election drains money away from state elections, so groups like Buckeye have the opportunity to become more important, if gun owners are willing to step up and help.
The one thing for sure is that we will be looking at a very different legislature when this year ends. How good they are on our issues is entirely in all of our hands.
Here’s to a safe and successful 2008.