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New York: Second Amendment and Legislative Process Assaulted in Albany Late Last Night

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Contact your Assemblyman NOW before they vote this morning


Just before midnight and within minutes of the bill text becoming available to the public, the New York Senate passed radical anti-gun legislation late last night.  Without any committee hearing or testimony, without public comment or even proper legislative procedure, anti-gun Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders, including Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver have cut a deal and sacrificed your constitutional rights that they swore to protect.  As a result, the state Senate passed S.2230 by a 43-18 vote and the Assembly will vote on it today.

The Second Amendment and legislative procedure became the sacrificial lamb in New York as Governor Andrew Cuomo's quest for headline-grabbing gun control was rammed through the Senate in the dark of night.  Anti-gun former Gov. Eliot Spitzer has described Governor Cuomo as "the dirtiest, nastiest political player out there...," and that certainly rang true during the wee hours of the morning as they deceptively slipped through their all-out assault on the Second Amendment and the law-abiding citizens in New York. Determined to steal the thunder from an anti-gun White House, Cuomo made passing gun control the first major issue of the 2013 legislative session.  Cuomo seized the opportunity to exploit tragedy and put his own personal politics ahead of sound public policy.  New York, with some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, is on the verge of enacting even more onerous laws on the backs of gun owners.  In fact, according to the Brady Campaign's national ranking of state gun control laws, New York is the fourth "best" (most restrictive) in the nation BEFORE this legislation is enacted.  Instead of preventing crime and punishing criminals, S.2230 focuses only on law-abiding gun owners and will do nothing to address public safety or crime.

Cuomo utilized a rarely-used executive trick, a "message of necessity" to circumvent the normal legislative procedures that are strictly followed on hundreds of bills each legislative session.  This scheme allowed this bill to be considered for a vote on the floor of each legislative chamber without the normal committee hearings and public input.  Proponents of S.2230 are obviously embarrassed to have any sunlight on this extreme anti-gun legislation and provide time for the public to review and comment on it through the normal legislative process. Such backroom dealing on constitutional rights is outrageous and disgraceful. And such an assault in Albany on Second Amendment rights and democracy is the true assault weapon.

S.2230 lowers New York's magazine capacity limit from ten rounds to seven.  It expands the state's existing pseudo (semi-auto) "assault weapons" ban by addressing pre-ban firearms.  Incredibly, S.2230 will also require background checks on ammunition purchases and prohibit online sales of both firearms and ammunition.  These failed gun control ideas will have no impact on public safety and crime, but the New York Senate gave no consideration to that reality.  Only eighteen Senators voted against S.2230 (see below) and only Senators Greg Ball and Kathy Marchione spoke against it.  While lawmakers could have taken a step toward strengthening mental health reporting and focusing on criminals, they opted for politics and punishing law-abiding gun owners in New York.

The NRA-ILA lobbyist spent days in Albany talking to Senators and Assembly members, acquiring information from closed door meetings as legislative leaders huddled with the Governor's office in a backroom at the Statehouse.  Lawmakers, bombarded by calls and e-mails from NRA members, became complicit in the Governor's plan when they convened late last night.   The Governor and the New York Senate launched an historic assault on the Second Amendment, leaving only Assembly action expected today where Democrats hold a supermajority.

Call your Assemblyman now to oppose S.2230.  Please review the recorded Senate vote and remember it when Senate candidates seek your support in future elections. 

Contact information for your Assemblyman can be found by clicking here.

These Senators voted to protect your rights:

Senator Ball

Senator Bonacic

Senator DeFrancisco

Senator Gallivan

Senator Griffo

Senator Farley

Senator Libous

Senator Larkin

Senator Maziarz

Senator O'Mara

Senator Razenhofer

Senator Seward

Senator Young

Senator Little

Senator Marchione

Senator Nozzolio

Senator Ritchie

Senator Robach



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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.