March 7, 2019
As reported by CNN, Republican Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Lindsey Graham (R-SC) announced his Committee will hold a hearing on a National “Red Flag” gun confiscation bill on March 26.1
“We’re going to have a hearing about 'Red Flag' [gun confiscation] legislation...I just want to work on the ‘Red Flag’ [gun confiscation] stuff and maybe the background check stuff.”
-- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) – Politico 2/26
Graham has previously sponsored legislation with anti-gun Democrat Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) which would give federal backing to states that adopt legislation authorizing the seizure of firearms without due process.2
After indicating continued support for these gun confiscation laws last December, Graham pledged during the recent Attorney General Confirmation hearings he will continue pushing a “Red Flag” gun confiscation proposals in 2019.3,4
Under current state “Red Flag” laws, legal firearms can be seized from law-abiding gun owners based on an unsubstantiated accusation from an anti-gun family member, ex-partner, or neighbor.
With no due process or presumption of innocence, they can ask the government to authorize seizure and send a SWAT team to show up at your door at 5 in the morning with ex parte orders to barge in and take your guns.
No notification. No due process.
“Instead of focusing law enforcement resources on stopping criminals, ‘Red Flag’ laws seek to weaponize the government against law-abiding gun owners,” said Dudley Brown, President of the National Association for Gun Rights. “It’s no wonder why twenty radical Democrats led by Dianne Feinstein are also sponsoring it.”
Unfortunately, “Red Flag” laws like this had deadly consequences for one Maryland father, who was shot dead on his door step after the state’s Republican Governor signed this policy into law.5
If this bill becomes law, more law abiding gun owners and law enforcement alike will needlessly be placed in harm’s way.
Unfortunately, Senator Lindsey Graham is not alone in his support for gun control. Fellow Republican Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Susan Collins (R-ME) introduced their own version of gun confiscation as well.6
And with preliminary indications of support coming from White House advisors, the threat of a “Red Flag” gun confiscation bill making its way to the Senate Floor is quite real.7
Senate Democrat leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) already has up to 48 votes. Marco Rubio, Susan Collins, and Linsey Graham would give him a gun control majority.
Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) and Mitt Romney (R-UT) both signed sweeping gun control measures into law as former Governors, putting any gun control “deal” dangerously close to the 60 vote threshold needed to pass.
Of course, Gun Confiscation isn’t the only thing Lindsey Graham has indicated support for.
After House Speaker Nancy Pelosi passed the Universal Gun Registration bill (H.R. 8) at the end of February, Graham told Politico he’s open to discussing “the background check stuff” too.8
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has not publicly stated his position on so-called “Red Flag” laws, but he would be wise to heed the electoral lessons of the past. Supporting gun control does NOT buy Republicans any favor from voters nor the rabid gun control special interests Sen. Graham seeks to placate.
Republican elected officials like Mike Coffman (R-CO), Carlos Curbello (R-FL), and Erik Paulsen (R-MN) all lost their seats, contributing to Pelosi’s takeover of the House, after sponsoring “Red Flag” gun confiscation.9,10
Other Republicans facing critical 2020 elections like Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Cory Gardner (R-CO) won their 2014 elections in large part due to the anti-Obama gun control wave that year.
In 2020, support from gun owners will once again be critical if Republicans desire to keep control of the Senate and White House.
However, if Senators Graham and McConnell – who themselves face re-election battles in very pro-gun states – allow a gun confiscation bill pass, it could provoke a historic backlash from gun owners, paving the way for even worse gun control in years to come.
1Landers, Elizabeth. "Lindsey Graham tells CNN: Judiciary Committee to hold gun control hearing on March 26." CNN Politics. March 7, 2019.
2Federal Extreme Risk Protection Order Act of 2018, S. 2521, 115th Cong. (2018)
3Ainsworth, Kat. "Sen. Lindsey Graham: I Approve of Red Flag Laws Taking Guns Away from Law-Abiding People." The Truth About Guns. December 13, 2018.
4C-SPAN. Lindsey Graham Working on "Red Flag" gun control legislation. February 7, 2019.
5Campbell, Collin. "Anne Arundel police say officers fatally shot armed man while serving protective order to remove guns." Baltimore Sun. November 5, 2018.
6Extreme Risk Protection Order and Violence Prevention Act of 2019, S. 7, 116th Cong. (2019)
7Valdes, Luis. "White House School Safety Commission Recommends Gun Confiscation." The Truth About Guns. December 19, 2018.
8Bresnahan, John & Everett, Burgess. "Graham rejects House gun bills even before vote." POLITICO. February 26, 2019.
9Jake Laird Act of 2018, H.R. 5717, 115th Cong. (2018)
10Gun Violence Restraining Order Act of 2017, H.R. 2598, 115th Cong. (2018)