Dems offer gun-control amendment to cybersecurity bill

posted at 9:21 am on July 27, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

You didn’t think Congress would do nothing after the Aurora shooting, did you — especially the Democrat-controlled Senate?  Fueled by the detail that the AR-15 (not an AK-47) used in the massacre had a high-capacity drum magazine — which jammed — Senate Democrats have offered an amendment to the pending cybersecurity bill that would ban possession of magazines past a maximum 10-round capacity:

Democratic senators have offered an amendment to the cybersecurity bill that would limit the purchase of high capacity gun magazines for some consumers.

Shortly after the Cybersecurity Act gained Senate approval to proceed to filing proposed amendments and a vote next week, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), a sponsor of the gun control amendment, came to the floor to defend the idea of implementing some “reasonable” gun control measures.

The amendment was sponsored by Democratic Sens. Frank Lautenberg (N.J.), Barbara Boxer (Calif.), Jack Reed (R.I.), Bob Menendez (N.J.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Schumer and Dianne Feinstein (Calif.). S.A. 2575 would make it illegal to transfer or possess large capacity feeding devices such as gun magazines, belts, feed stripes and drums of more than 10 rounds of ammunition with the exception of .22 caliber rim fire ammunition.

The amendment is identical to a separate bill sponsored by Lautenberg. Feinstein was the sponsor of the assault weapons ban, which expired in 2004.

Ten rounds?  That is, I believe, the smallest capacity magazine for any firearm that uses one. I own four magazines for my semiautomatic Glock 23 .40 caliber pistol, and only one of those is a 10-round magazine.  The others, which would be grandfathered under the bill but which I could not replace if it passed, have capacities of 13 and 15 rounds.  What makes a 13-round magazine more inherently dangerous than a 10-round magazine, or a 15-round magazine than a 13-rounder?

As of 2007, six states had magazine-capacity restrictions, four of those at 10 rounds: California, New York, Massachusetts, and Hawaii, not exactly known for their gun-rights-friendly attitudes.  Hawaii’s only applies to handguns.  New Jersey’s limit is 15, while Maryland’s is 20.  The rest of the states haven’t seen the need to enact magazine limits.

Perhaps it might be “reasonable” to restrict the high-capacity drum magazines to military and law-enforcement uses, but that’s only if you think that someone could benefit from the need of a shooter to repeatedly reload.  Let’s not forget that Aurora forbids anyone from carrying or discharging a weapon at all, and so did the theater in which the massacre took place.  The perpetrator had no problem switching weapons and/or reloading because Aurora had already disarmed his victims through their “reasonable” gun control statutes and rules.  This regulation would have made absolutely no difference in the shooting which Democrats have used to launch this new law.

I doubt this amendment will make it through the Senate, but if it does, the entire cybersecurity bill will be ignored by the House.

Update: I was incorrect about mag capacities in some specific instances, as Madison Conservative notes in the comments:

That’s entirely wrong, Ed. First of all, most magazines for larger capacity handguns, such as .45ACP, 10MM, or .50AE, carry anywhere between 6-9 rounds. Secondly, for semi-automatic shotguns that have magazines, they usually have a minimum of five rounds. Finally, some rifle magazines carry 5-10 rounds, although that usually only applies to rifles that are 50 years old or more.

All that aside, this needs to catch fire and take the cybersecurity bill down with it.

I’d wager that most magazines for handguns and rifles have a base of 9-10 round capacity, but clearly not all.


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…into an internal magazine.

MadisonConservative on July 27, 2012 at 11:11 PM

I wasn’t arguing about it. I was merely pointing out that it was loaded via stripper clips.

You know, in your anxiety to prove everyone who deviates from your accepted wisdom wrong, you tend to lose sight of your allies. You may not be the gun expert that you believe yourself to be.

Solaratov on July 28, 2012 at 6:43 PM

Solaratov on July 28, 2012 at 6:43 PM

It’s not anxiety. I was merely pointing out that clips are only a temporary holder, and are not what feeds the rifle.

If you have some issue with me, that’s your problem. If you’re going to get your panties in a bunch because I want to ensure that others aren’t confused, then don’t bother responding to me.

MadisonConservative on July 29, 2012 at 3:38 AM

I guess I’m a pretty pitiful gun nut, but out of the 14 firearms I own only one has a capacity of more than 10 rounds —a Glock 31C with four 15 round magazines that I bought after leaving California. After 12 years in the Army I could just never work up much enthusiasm over an AR type rifle. The 5.56 caliber is inadequate for hunting in Montana, where we often hunt elk in the same area as deer. Furthermore my chances of fighting in the next revolution are about the same as the Democrats not lying every time they speak.

ARs in 308 are too heavy for what they are. My 308s are a Kimber Classic Select that weighs 6.75 lbs all up and a CZ550 Kevlar Varmint with a Nikon Tactical scope that weighs about 13 lbs all up. The Kimber holds 5 rounds, will put 3 into 1 inch at 100 yards before the barrel heats up, and is easy to carry in the mountains. I do have a 10 round magazine for the CZ, and it will lay down 0.5 to 0.75 inch groups until you run out of ammo.

I have to admit that I’ve had the hots for a SIG 551, but they’re a little pricey and a little heavy. I’ve also looked at the Colt 6920 —at 6 lbs it has some appeal. Anyway, what would I do with the thing? I suppose for old times sake I could go out when it’s raining cats and dogs, lay in the mud, and pop off at targets at 300 meters that I can barely see…

claudius on July 29, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Reliability trumps magazine capacity every time. I have four 8 round magazines for my Kimber 45, but loaded with 8 rounds they are hard to insert if I want to refresh before I’m empty, and it’s hard to rack the slide on 8 rounds, so I load them with 7 rounds and function is perfect. I really don’t want to fire 1 shot and have the thing jam. Back in the 70s I had a Colt Gold Cup that tended not to feed the second round from its 7 round magazine unless it was only loaded to 6 rounds. So, with me loading down one round in my 45s has become a tradition. If the thing won’t shoot it doesn’t matter how many rounds you have.

claudius on July 29, 2012 at 11:52 AM

claudius on July 29, 2012 at 11:52 AM

Funny. Deployed I never put more than 28 rounds in a 30 round magazine and when I went home on midtour, I’d empty the magazines (and clean the sand out) and the pressure relaxed seemed to extend the life of the springs.

Having said that, I got a lot of comments from people swearing that would never be necessary. I couldn’t take chances of it not feeding.

hawkdriver on July 29, 2012 at 12:16 PM

hawkdriver on July 29, 2012 at 12:16 PM

You are wise. I’d never take a chance loading from a full magazine on a closed bolt when doing a refresh. That’s when things will go wrong. A little powder-CLP goo and some grit will ruin your day. Leaving a little extra slack in the follower is a good idea.

claudius on July 29, 2012 at 1:37 PM

I guess I’m a pretty pitiful gun nut, but out of the 14 firearms I own

If you know how many guns you have you don’t have enough guns. :-)

Lammo on July 29, 2012 at 2:42 PM

Well, I did have to add them up on my fingers and toes. It looks like I’m about to add another. She who must be obeyed has given her blessing to a Colt 6920 (good resale value :^)).

claudius on July 29, 2012 at 5:00 PM

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