Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

UN General Assembly Passes Arms Trade Treaty, Senate Rebuffs

Friday, April 5, 2013

On April 2, the United Nations General Assembly voted 153-4 to pass the Arms Trade Treaty, with the United States voting in favor and several countries abstaining. The vote in the General Assembly was necessary to push the treaty process forward after negotiations twice failed to deliver on the goal of developing the treaty by unanimous consent. The Obama Administration is expected to sign the treaty soon after it is opened for signature June 3.

The text of the approved treaty is deeply problematic and threatens the rights and privacy of American gun owners. Signatories are encouraged to keep information on the "end users" of arms imported into their territory and supply such information to the exporting country. Exporting nations, nearly all of which have civilian firearm control regimes far harsher than the U.S., are encouraged to take the firearm control laws of an importing country into account before approving a transfer of arms. The treaty also encourages states to adopt domestic legislation to facilitate the treaty's onerous requirements.

For U.S. gun owners, the fight now moves to the Senate, where the Obama administration would need to find 67 senators to ratify the treaty. A majority of senators have already made clear their opposition. On March 23, 53 senators endorsed an amendment to the Senate Budget Resolution for Fiscal Year 2014, "establish[ing] a deficit neutral fund" to oppose United States entrance into the treaty. Additionally, Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kans.), along with 32 cosponsors, has put forth a concurrent resolution expressing the Senate's opposition to the ATT, as it "fails to expressly recognize the fundamental, individual right to keep and to bear arms and the individual right of personal self-defense... and thus risks infringing on freedoms protected by the Second Amendment."

Following U.N. passage of the treaty, several senators were quick to further register their opposition. In an April 2 press release, Sen. Moran made clear his continued opposition to the ATT and urged his colleagues to do the same, noting, "Given the apparent support of the Obama Administration for the ATT, members of the U.S. Senate must continue to make clear that any treaty that violates our Second Amendment freedoms will be an absolute nonstarter for ratification." Moran's office also pointed out that the General Assembly vote illustrates how the Obama Administration reneged in its previous insistence that the ATT be developed by consensus.

Also commenting on the ATT vote was Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), who reiterated some of the NRA's concerns about the document, stating, "The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty that passed in the General Assembly today would require the United States to implement gun-control legislation as required by the treaty, which could supersede the laws our elected officials have already put into place."

Similarly, Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) urged Senate opposition, declaring, "It's our job to make sure any treaty the U.S. enters doesn't interfere with our sovereign ability to uphold the rights of Americans… The arms treaty simply doesn't include strong enough protections to pass that test, and I won't support any treaty that undermines the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Montanans."

A day later, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) joined in with a statement in which the senator explains, "I have great concerns that this treaty can be used to violate the Second Amendment rights of American citizens, and do not believe we should sign any treaty that infringes on the sovereignty of our country."

Unfortunately, once a treaty has been signed, it normally remains available for the Senate to ratify in perpetuity, unless a later president withdraws from it. This means that American gun owners must remain vigilant in ensuring this treaty is never ratified. In the coming months and years, the NRA will keep gun owners up to date on any movement toward ratification, and will work with our allies in the Senate to ensure the treaty remains unratified.

TRENDING NOW
Another Week, Another Democrat Presidential Contender Out to Round Up America's Guns

News  

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Another Week, Another Democrat Presidential Contender Out to Round Up America's Guns

A smart person learns from his mistakes. An even smarter person learns from the mistakes of others.  Beto O’Rourke, an unemployed Texan running for president, must not be too smart.           

Monday, August 19, 2019

Florida Alert! "Assault Weapons" Ban Amendment Bans ALL SEMIAUTOMATIC RIFLES AND SHOTGUNS

The so-called "assault weapons" ban that is proposed for a constitutional amendment to be on the 2020 Election Ballot bans the possession of: “any semiautomatic rifle or shotgun CAPABLE of holding more than ten (10) rounds ...

No, Joe, Your Gun Ban Didn’t Work

News  

Sunday, August 18, 2019

No, Joe, Your Gun Ban Didn’t Work

Joe Biden has been out on the primary campaign trail working hard. Maybe a little too hard. “We got to let them know who we are,” he recently told a crowd of supporters at the Iowa State ...

Amnesty International’s Desperate Measure

News  

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Amnesty International’s Desperate Measure

There are some odd dynamics in international relations. Countries in which people are not free serve on the UN Human Rights Council. Political considerations guide every action.  Of course, the NRA is a single-issue organization so ...

NRA Member Berated for Carrying Firearm

News  

Friday, August 2, 2019

NRA Member Berated for Carrying Firearm

NRA member Darrell Kennedy was on vacation with his family at Yellowstone National Park earlier this month when an anti-gun vacationer snapped a photo of his holstered firearm and tweeted out a hate message. “Sat ...

Sparking Dialogue or Sparking Joy: Competing Views on Gun “Buyback” Initiatives

News  

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Sparking Dialogue or Sparking Joy: Competing Views on Gun “Buyback” Initiatives

The Christian Science Monitor describes itself as “an independent international news organization” that wants to “help you to see news events as starting points for constructive conversations.” Its editorial board recently published an article, A seed for society’s ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

Bill Clinton Touts Failed Gun Ban With Bogus Info

News  

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Bill Clinton Touts Failed Gun Ban With Bogus Info

Bill and Hillary Clinton just don’t draw like they used to. Shunned by much of his own party, (described by one Vanity Fair commentator as “2020’s bubonic plague”) the former president has been relegated to providing lazy ...

California: Appropriations Committees Send Bills to the Suspense File

Thursday, August 15, 2019

California: Appropriations Committees Send Bills to the Suspense File

On Monday, August 12, the Senate Appropriations Committee sent AB 1254 to the suspense file and rescheduled AB 1669 to be heard next Monday, August 19. On Wednesday, August 14, the Assembly Appropriations Committee sent SB 172 ...

Tell Your U.S. Senators and Representative to Oppose Gun Control

News  

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Tell Your U.S. Senators and Representative to Oppose Gun Control

In the wake of the recent two criminal mass attacks, a number of gun control proposals have begun to circulate in our nation’s capital. None of these proposals would have prevented the recent tragedies, but they all ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

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.