President's overreach on guns must be stopped

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That tragic failure has not deterred the White House from using the issue to divide Americans for political gain.
 
Rather than take measures proven to reduce gun violence, the White House Wednesday engaged in a grandstanding political attack intended to divide Americans. His executive orders and legislative proposals make us less safe from criminals and dangerous people.
 
I will urge Congress to defeat the president’s legislative proposals that violate the Constitution and make us less safe. They must not pass.
 
My office is also currently reviewing the president’s executive orders against the Constitution and existing law.
 
These executive orders may abuse executive authority by touching upon rights held by the people and usurping Congress’ constitutional authority as the only lawmaking body.
 
Among the executive orders are expanding background checks, which creates a de facto national gun registry, to the private transfer of firearms. For example, if you give a loved one your hunting rifle, you may face prison if you fail to get approval from the government.
 
Those proposals, along with others floated by the White House as presidential decrees, are cutting attacks on the right of a peaceable citizen to keep and bear arms for your personal defense.
 
The Executive Orders issued by President Obama are not intended to execute laws passed by the Congress. President Obama is abusing his authority to write his own unaccountable laws intended to influence private citizens.
 
I am prepared to assert the Constitution with peaceable legislative force.
 
- I will seek legislation overturning the executive orders.
 
- I will seek legislation barring funds to enforce the executive orders.
 
- I will seek legislation to cut White House funding should the president enforce such executive orders.
 
- I will support legal efforts to overturn the executive orders in court.
 
- I would hope those legislative and legal remedies would deter President Obama or thwart his efforts.
 
However, if they do not or are unsuccessful I will consider speaking with my colleagues and filing articles of impeachment.
 
Impeachment is not something to be taken lightly. It is a grave and serious undertaking that should only be initiated in a sober and serious manner. It should be reserved only for most egregious of trespasses by the president.
 
I would consider the president’s use of executive orders to engage in attacks on a constitutionally-protected right to be a violation his sworn oath of office. The president cannot issue executive orders depriving the people of full access to an enumerated constitutional right through petty bureaucratic harassment.
 
I do not think it will come to that. The president cannot write his own laws that impact private citizens. His actions and orders can, and should, be checked and balanced by the Congress and the courts – if the Congress is willing.
 
Additionally, I have introduced the “Safe Schools Act” to repeal so-called “gun free school zones.” The law has not only failed to protect our children, it has made them vulnerable targets and succeeded only in persecuting law-abiding citizens who accidentally travel near a school with a gun, such as the Montana honors students caught with a hunting rifle in her car. Those law-abiding citizens, not criminals, are the only ones impacted by “gun free school zones.”
 
Congress has an obligation to not only assert its constitutional authority as the only lawful rule-making body, but to overturn bad laws that place innocents in danger.
 
The purpose of government is to protect rights, such as life and liberty, from those who would trespass upon them. The president’s political attacks do not protect children. They only divide us for political gain.
 
I would encourage my colleagues to join me, and their constituents in defeating the political attacks disguised as legislative proposals, supporting H.R. 35, The Safe Schools Act, to reverse the tide of tragedy the failed 1990 law has pulled in as well.
 
I would also encourage my colleagues to join me in seeking to first overturn and defund any executive orders impacting private citizens, keeping further measures on the table for future consideration if need be.
 
Stockman is a freshman Republican from Texas.