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From: (Doug Gwyn (ACISD/MCSB) <gwyn>)
Subject: [LEGISLATIVE] Re: BS from MD AG
Organization: U.S. Army Research Laboratory APG, MD.
Followup-To: talk.politics.guns

In article <2n2jlt$> (Jim Purtilo)

#Looks like gun-banners will do just about *anything* to ban a gun ...
#The governor of this state, Schaffer, has had an almost unnatural interest
#in pushing through *some* kind of gun ban this year, and has been making deals
#right and left ...

In case it looks to some of the readers like Jim is suffering from
paranoia, I will vouch for the accuracy of his impressions.  Our
"lame duck" Governor has been actively promoting more controls on
legitimate Maryland gun owners, and the legislative process on the
cited bill, SB 619, has been exceedingly strange, including:

	- Senate president Mike Miller assigns bill to Environmental
	Affairs subcommitte, rather than Judicial committee, because
	the Judicial committee contains too many people with some
	degree of knowledge about firearms and historically do not
	approve irrational gun control bills for forwarding to the
	full Senate.  As originally phrased to justify this ploy,
	SB 619 merely amended an existing law that prohibits firearms
	in the legislative buildings, to also prohibit so-called
	"assault weapons" (the Roberti-Roos nonsense that Feinstein
	for one has been pushing) in the legislative buildings.
	Since the scope was limited to the legislative buildings,
	it was arguably appropriate for the Environmental Affairs
	- From the beginning, SB 619 was intended to serve as a
	vehicle for the gun control activists to amend to attach all
	manner of gun-control measures, and indeed before SB 619 even
	made it out of committee it had already been heavily amended.
	As passed by the state Senate, it prohibits so-called "assault
	weapons" and over-20-round magazines everywhere in the state,
	not just within the legislative buildings, and outlaws
	several perfectly innocuous small pistols that had previously
	been approved for sale by the MD state handgun control board,
	who maintain the list of handguns approved for sale in MD.
	(Luckily that board has been essentially apolitical so far.)
	It is clear to any rational person in possession of the facts
	that this constitutes amending the bill out of scope.  This is
	borne out by the original (and current) title of SB 619,
	"Weapons -- interference with legislative process", which
	ironically has an entirely appropriate double entendre here.
	Thus Assistant DA Israel is either incompetent or irresponsible
	in opining that the bill in its current form is essentially the
	same as the form used to justify bypassing the Judicial
	committee that is tasked with considering general gun control
	- During hearings and lobbying, gun-control-supporting aides
	lied to state Senators, claiming that the additional
	prohibitions amended onto the original bill also applied only
	within legislative buildings.
	- In addition to the usual lies of gun control activists, the
	Governor and some state police official (sorry, don't recall
	which one) put on a dog and pony show where they exhibited
	several firearms that were *not* covered by the bill, aiming
	a full-auto Uzi (I think it was) at the audience and stating
	how they could have killed them all.  This irresponsible
	behavior was by the most senior state officials!
		[MODERATOR:  The individuals mentioned by Doug are
	 	 Tolliver, superintendent of state police, and Shaw,
		 also of state police.  I now have the photographs
		 of what these people promoted as being affected by
		 the ban, demonstrating the lie of the state police.]
	- The hearings were manipulated to make sure that only the
	supporters of gun controls got media coverage.
	- Three state Senators on the Environmental Affairs committee
	with the courage to change their usual moderately anti-gun
	stance to oppose this ridiculous bill were singled out in a
	vicious editorial in The Sun (the state's major newspaper),
	which promised to remind voters to vote against these Senators
	(who The Sun said were "opposing the will of the people",
	ignoring the fact that the majority of calls fielded by the
	Senatorial staff I talked to were against SB 619), unless
	these Senators recanted and supported SB 619.  (The Sun is
	notoriously anti-gun and acts as a major sounding board for
	anti-gunowner propaganda provided by groups like Marylanders
	Against Handgun Abuse, which follows the HCI party line.)  I
	haven't yet seen a voting roster for SB 619, but it cleared
	the E.A. committee by only one vote, so if *any* of the
	Senators pressured by The Sun changed his/her vote, that made
	the difference.
	- A vote to add an onerous amendment to SB 619 was taken and
	the amendment was rejected.  Then, after some sort of dealing
	the details of which escaped me, the *same* amendment was
	re-voted and passed.

I won't say that I was much surprised by the dirty politics engaged in
by the gun control advocates, because it is consistent with what they
are accustomed to doing everywhere in this nation.  I will say that I
am disgusted, also disappointed that supposed representatives of the
citizens would support such shenanigans, regardless of content of the
legislation.  One thing for sure, come next election time I'm going
to be helping distribute information about the shameful behavior of
some of these legislators to the voters, so they will have incentive
to throw the rascals out.

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