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Morning Fix: Thune Enters Stage Right



Sen. John Thune is positioning himself as a major player in the GOP policy debate. AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke

Update, 12:40 p.m.: The Senate tabled Thune's conceal and carry amendment today by a vote of 58 to 39 -- two votes short of the 60 votes needed to approve the measure. Nearly 20 Democrats including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.), who is up for re-election in 2010, voted in favor of the Thune amendment.

Original Post

South Dakota Sen. John Thune will step into the national spotlight today when the Senate votes on his measure that would allow gun owners to carry concealed weapons across state lines.

The legislation has drawn huge attention in recent days -- New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg called it a "misguided proposal" on Tuesday -- which has amounted to a sort of coming-out party for Thune, who has been seen as a star in waiting since he defeated then Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D) in 2004.

"I think John has the unique opportunity to control his political destiny and I feel he understands that raising his profile on issues that concern his state and the GOP base has a bilateral effect," said Republican media consultant Doug McAuliffe who has done work for Thune in the past.

In other words, Thune's high profile on a gun rights issue both helps him in South Dakota, where the 2nd Amendment is considered sacred, AND boosts his profile among conservatives nationally by pushing an issue that is near and dear to their hearts.

Thune has, to date, largely avoiding wading into the morass at the top of his largely leaderless party but a confluence of factors suggest he is well positioned to use the press garnered in this legislative fight to push himself into the fray.

First, Thune is now one of the top four members of Republican leadership in the Senate, having run unopposed in June for the post of Senate Policy Committee chairman -- a spot vacated by Sen. John Ensign (Nev.) following revelations of an extramarital affair with his former chief of staff's wife.

Second, Thune faces no serious opposition for a second term in 2010; Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D) bowed out of a statewide race and Democrats acknowledge they have no one who will give Thune any serious problems.

Third, Thune has proven himself to be one of the strongest fundraisers in the Senate, ending June with more than $5 million on hand and will focus over the next few months on raising cash for his Heartland Values PAC in order to help other Republican candidates in 2010. (The PAC ended June with just $134,000 in the bank.)

Fourth, Thune has a solid core of political people around him -- led by Justin Brasell who is managing Thune's reelection race after spending the 2008 election doing the same for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.).

Few -- if any -- Republican elected officials can match that sort of résumé, a fact that should make Thune someone to watch over the next few months (and years), according to longtime Republican lobbyist Ed Rogers.

"If you want to set up a run for president in 2012, right now you should keep a serious (and lower) profile, work on matters within the party and have a legitimate claim to leadership on a couple of issues that the GOP faithful care about," Rogers said. "Or, put another way, you should be positioned exactly like Senator Thune."

Wednesday's Fix Picks: One day left of voting for the next inductee into the Fix Political Hall of Fame. Cast your ballot! Do it. Now.

1. What the F-22 vote can tell us about health care.
2. Adam Nagourney on Republicans' opportunity in 2010 governors races.
3. Ari Fleischer: Sports flack.
4. Dan Seals: Is the third time a charm?
5. Is Babies "R" Us price-fixing?

Crist Opposes Sotomayor: Florida Gov. Charlie Crist came out in opposition to judge Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation to the Supreme Court Tuesday, a sign that despite a wide lead in his Senate primary race against former state House Speaker Marco Rubio he is adopting the "better safe than sorry" approach to the intraparty fight."I have strong concerns that Judge Sotomayor would not strictly and objectively construe the constitution and lacks respect for the fundamental right to keep and bear arms," said Crist in a statement announcing his opposition. Hitting on two conservative touchstone -- strict constructionism and the right to bear arms -- in his statement is Crist's not-so-subtle way of pushing back against the idea that he is a moderate. That's an important stance given that Rubio is running to Crist's ideological right and had already come out against Sotomayor's confirmation. Crist's calculation here is an interesting one; he appears more concerned about angering the GOP primary electorate by supporting Sotomayor than risking the ire of Hispanics in a general election against Rep. Kendrick Meek.

PA-Gov Poll Shows Wide Open Race: New polling from Quinnipiac University shows that voters remain undecided about their choices for governor of Pennsylvania. On the Democratic side, Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato and state Auditor Jack Wagner are tied for the lead with 16 percent each while Tom Knox, who ran for Philadelphia mayor in 2007, took 13 percent. A whopping 54 percent of Democrats were undecided. (Scranton Mayor Chris Doherty has said he is weighing a bid for the Democratic nod but was not included in the poll.) On the Republican side, state Attorney General Tom Corbett was the clear favorite with 38 percent followed by Rep. Jim Gerlach at 15 percent and former U.S. Attorney Patrick Meehan at nine percent. Still, more than a third of Republicans (37 percent) said they had not made up their mind about their preferred nominee. One thing that is certain from the Q poll: voters have tired of Gov. Ed Rendell (D). Just 39 percent approved of the job Rendell is doing while 53 percent disapproved. Rendell, the former mayor of Philadelphia, is term limited out of office in 2010.

Malcolm Steps Down/Up: Ellen Malcolm is stepping aside as president of EMILY's List, the powerhouse fundraising and political organization for pro-choice women, to take a new role as chairman of the group's board. Malcolm, who founded the group, will formally step aside next April -- the 25th anniversary of EMILY's List's inception. The organization has already begun a search, which is being headed by Arnie Miller, for the next president.

Click It!: Just in case you forgot about conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh, the Democratic National Committee wants to remind you -- with a new web ad that seeks to tie Limbaugh's past pronouncement that he hoped President Obama failed with more recent statements from Republican leaders on Obama's health care plan. Sen. Jim DeMint's (R-S.C.) now famous comment about a health care defeat being Obama's "Waterloo" is excerpted as is Sen. Lindsey Graham's comment that Obama will fail. (What would the DNC do without the two senators from South Carolina?). At the end of the ad, the screen reads: "Tell Republicans: stop rooting for failure and start fighting for the American people."

Say What?: "I doubt he's up to speed on the back-and-forth on that in Pennsylvania." -- White House press secretary Robert Gibbs does his best to stay out of the increasingly nasty Democratic primary fight between Sen. Arlen Specter and Rep. Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania.

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 22, 2009; 5:34 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Comments

I guess spam is better than Jake or zouk

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 23, 2009 1:17 AM | Report abuse

You can either Lease or buy a new car to use the cash for clunkers program. It has to be new vehicles and not used ones.

Jhenry
Blogger
www.cashforclunkersfacts.info
http://www.cashforclunkersfacts.info

Posted by: jhenry2307 | July 23, 2009 12:55 AM | Report abuse

Again - this apparently failed bill isn't about anything more than a minority-party backbencher's attempt to hit a predictable/dependable hot button amongst the fevered NRA crowd. This well-armed arm of the GOP - to be honest - loves to get its dander up about anything that can possibly be construed as 2nd Amendment issue. With no gauntlet being thrown by President Obama or Dem Congressional Leaders, the NRA and their Senatorial allies are just trying to stir up the rank-n-file.

==

Even most people who are passionate about the Second Amendment have to know that it's not threatened in any realistic way.

Maybe Thune's amendment riles up the filth but I would hope everyone else recognizes it as the pandering that it is

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

McConnell is voting against her, so are many others. She's an impeccable judge of vast experience, and Republicans are voting against her because she was nominated by Obama, whom they wish to fail.

Your party of allegiance is led by spoiled children.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Crist may be opposed to Sotomayor, but Lindsey Graham (R-SC) announced today that he would vote for her. What was mark_in_austin saying about not many Republican Senators voting for her?

Posted by: JakeD | July 22, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Again - this apparently failed bill isn't about anything more than a minority-party backbencher's attempt to hit a predictable/dependable hot button amongst the fevered NRA crowd. This well-armed arm of the GOP - to be honest - loves to get its dander up about anything that can possibly be construed as 2nd Amendment issue. With no gauntlet being thrown by President Obama or Dem Congressional Leaders, the NRA and their Senatorial allies are just trying to stir up the rank-n-file.

Posted by: molsonmich | July 22, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

A Comment on my earlier post:

It is with no sense of satisfaction that I noted the Thune Amendment was defeated.

This isn't anything new for either the NRA or Sen. Thune, who has tried this trick of attaching his amendment to essential bills several times before. It's clear that only by this means could such an amendment hope to pass.

Obviously, from my outsider's viewpoint, this is merely incrementally backing away from the very precipice on which the entire country was dangerously teetering.

It's so ironic that the very people who, to a man, support what they would call 'protecting the unborn life', are equally determined to remove any safeguards to lives outside the womb by loosening firearms standards!

I wish we could all have a non-emotional discussion on both subjects, but everyone is so dug in to their positions that it inevitably devolves into screaming and name-calling--DAMN that grotesque 'Crossfire' format!

Posted by: sverigegrabb | July 22, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

"Isn't it funny...liberals are all about States Rights and letting localities make any laws they want free of Federal interference....as long as we are talking about guns. Abortion...health care...any other divisive issue liberals want to enforce a Federal mandate down the throats of everyone else."

It's more about what makes sense. Gun issues vary so much from state to state that it makes sense to legislate differently.

Abortion laws vary from state to state as well. I don't see anyone trying to change this. Perhaps you can give some names?

Same with health care.

I think we all just assumed you were making this up anyways, so feel free not to respond.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

shrink2:
"They do have an agenda for change, like, repealing gun control laws even in the face of States Rights."

Isn't it funny...liberals are all about States Rights and letting localities make any laws they want free of Federal interference....as long as we are talking about guns. Abortion...health care...any other divisive issue liberals want to enforce a Federal mandate down the throats of everyone else.

That pesky 10th Amendment....said any rights not specifically mentioned in the Constitution or Bill of rights should be left to the states. Gun ownership was mentioned....abortion, health care were not.

Don't libera....errrr, "progressives" have it backwards as far as the issues where they want to protect "States Rights" and those where they do not?

Posted by: dbw1 | July 22, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

If gun ownership was all about responsible marksmanship then gun owners passionate about self-defense would be content with low-caliber weapons. But that's not what sells. What sells is raw firepower, many gun owners want automatics, they want Magnums. They're rather prevail through overwhelming force instead of on accuracy.

And you don't get very far in any gun discussion without wild fantasy scenarios, the Sadistic Intruder who breaks into your home not to get some money for dope but so he can kill everyone real slow like.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Bsimon and VAConservative, thank you for your information on the Concealed Carry Permits and proficiency. Although I appreciate and understand that the vast majority of gun owners are extremely responsible beings, VAConservative, I would feel more comfortable if there were a proficiency requirement if you are to carry a concealed weapon on the street. Although I will definitely take you up on the research on police and security guard proficiency with their weapons, you wouldn't want someone like me, who couldn't shoot the side of a barn at 10 paces, carrying a concealed weapon. I would also think that most police departments and sercurity companies, just for liability issues, would make sure their gun-carrying employees show proficiency in the use of a weapon, but then again, I DO need to research the issue.

I think that gun owners and gun rights activists would make their cases more pallatable on this question by requiring owners, based on the Second Amendment's requirement that a well-regulated (and ready) militia is available, to establish requirements for them to practice markmanship and show that they know how to use their weapon. Perhaps laws like that are already on the books of most states. I also know the vast majority of gun owners are sensible and extremely careful with them, but a gun protects by hurting or killing someone who threatens you. Thus, I would feel much better if I knew the man or woman using it knows what he or she is doing.

As I said earlier, and though the amendment was defeated, John Thune got what he needed from it, publicity, called a marker on the NRA (that he will cash come his time to get re-elected), and some publicity in his home state of South Dakota. In other words, it is a needed political genuflection to one of his supporters and to his state, nothing more, nothing less. Just a little more of that sausage-making that is day-to-day politics.

Posted by: Kruhn1 | July 22, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Just imagine a world where conservatives get everything they want.

No welfare, no minimum wage, no unemployment insurance, massive offshoring of jobs. A nation where unemployment is always in double digits, maybe high double digits, and the able-bodied have to work 16 or more hours a day in exchange for calories.

Desperate, grim times .. and guns everywhere, unrestricted, in airport vending machines, people packing on buses and in supermarkets.

Doesn't sound like a great place to live.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

The 18th century liberal believed in a smaller government, personal responsibility and freedom.

Today's liberal cannot even conceive those concepts.

==

Don't you ever get tired of thinking in these cartoonish caricatures?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

2007 murder rates:

New York City 6.3 per 100,000 residents
Rapid City South Dakota 6.3 per 100,000 residents

Posted by: scottilla | July 22, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

If states want to make laws to allow certain uses of guns, that is their right. There is no reason that a Senator from So Dakota should be telling people in New York how things will be done in their state. It seems tyrannical, like ruling abortions illegal.

I favor gun rights. But I also favor non gun owners rights as well. Each state can regulate their gun accessibility within their borders. What this country needs is more employment opportunities not more mobility for guns.

Posted by: Gator-ron | July 22, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

...and that is why libertarians and conservatives make strange bed fellows.

The Bush/Cheney conservatives shoved one affront to civil liberty after another down American throats.

Clarence Thomas opined last month that school officials should be able to make girls' remove their panties, otherwise he worried, they'd be sending the message that hiding pills in your crotch was ok.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 22, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Update from New Jersey

Chris Christie increases lead over Gov. Jon Corzine in latest poll
by The Star-Ledger Continuous News Desk
Wednesday July 22, 2009, 9:44 AM
A new poll announced Tuesday finds gubernatorial candidate Christopher Christie leading Gov. Jon Corzine by 15 percentage points, as New Jerseyans increasingly think the state is not headed in the right direction.
The poll, conducted by Strategic Vision, LLC, an Atlanta-headquartered public relations and public affairs agency, puts Christie ahead of Corzine 53 percent to 38 percent. The results of the three-day poll of 800 likely voters in New Jersey also found that most respondents thought the state was headed in the wrong direction. When asked, 24 percent of likely voters said New Jersey was headed in the right direction; 62 percent said wrong; and 14 percent were undecided.
When asked if they approved or disapproved of Governor Jon Corzine's job performance, 35 percent approved and 55 percent disapproved. Fifty-one percent of respondents approved of Senator Robert Menendez's job performance, while 38 percent disapproved. Senator Frank Lautenberg had 48 percent approving of his job performance with 42 percent disapproving.
"The number of New Jersey residents who believe the state is headed in the wrong direction cuts across party lines and has increased since June," said David E. Johnson, CEO of Strategic Vision.
The poll has a margin of error of +/-3 percentage points. In the poll, 40 percent identified themselves as Democrats, 28 percent identified themselves as Republicans (28%); and 32 percent identified themselves as independents or other party affiliation.
The results of the poll also showed that 50 percent of those polled approved of President Barack Obama's overall job performance, with 40 percent disapproving; and 10 percent undecided. When asked if they approved of the President's handling of the economy, 47 percent approved and 45 percent disapproved.
On the issue of Iraq, the poll found 52 percent approved of the President's handling of the war and 39 percent disapproving. When asked if the approved of President Obama's overall handling of foreign relations, the poll found 53 percent approving and 39 percent disapproving.
"The President has seen a dramatic decline in his support since our poll in June and this is most dramatic among Independent voters and can be related to the economy," Johnson said. "We are seeing this swing among Independents in other states as well. Interestingly the President gets higher approval numbers for his handling of foreign affairs which was considered one of his weak spots then on the economy."

Posted by: duanelaw1 | July 22, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - agreed - but, there is no relationship with the 18th century liberal and today's leftwing statist who perverts the word "liberal."

The 18th century liberal believed in a smaller government, personal responsibility and freedom.

Today's liberal cannot even conceive those concepts.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

"Dear heavens....could it be that I, a right-wing conservative lunatic, could actually be in agreement with (and quite possibly LEFT of) DDAWD on something? Must be yesterday's eclipse upsetting the political balance...."

Incidentally, this issue isn't as left-right divided as Republicans would like you to think. Both Clinton and Obama stressed their respect for gun rights and took the very sensible position that these issues should be left to the individual places. DC and New Orleans SHOULD have different laws than a mountain town in South Dakota or a farming town in Iowa. Republicans like to make this a wedge issue as they do with everything else. It doesn't really work that way, though.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Just like all rabid rightwingers, Thune wants to force his paranoid hate-ridden gun nut ideology on all of us. The US just keeps getting more dangerous -- largely because of the lunatics in the NRA.

Posted by: drindl | July 22, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Gun owners have a blind spot about the use of guns to kill people, they're preoccupied with the use of guns as deterrent. Someone mentione Va Tech in a bizarre inversion .. Seung Cho wouldn't have been able to kill 30 people without guns, yet the gun nuts see the answer in deterrence.

Yeah, some responsible red-blooded American would have "taken out" Cho before he killed too many people.

Neglecting the fact that the patriotic red-blooded American is in his late teens and is awash with hormones and aggression and doesn't have a lot of practice at sobriety.

We could debate guns as murder weapons versus guns as deterrent until the glacier comes back, but there remains the fact of so many other countries without universal gun rights, and those countries have less murder than we do, not more.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

"Our forefathers were not plagued with leftist, socialist drivel."


Our forefathers were the leftists (there wasn't yet socialism). It was through their liberal educations that they were aware of the Greeks and democracy. The conservatives wanted to remain colonies of the King.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

kn - ever hear of per capita statistics?

Don't let reason get in your way....

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Oh golly, THUNE IS A FAILURE!!!

All NEOCON REPUBLICANS ARE.

Neocons don't let facts, common sense, or law stop them from trying to do what they want even though it ALWAYS causes problems for the rest of us - and for decades on end.

Just look at the failure of their ideology:

~Lies in the State of The Union Address to sell the completely un-needed war in Iraq which had ZERO to do with 9/11.

~Selling out America to Enron's illegal manipulation of energy prices.

~Illegal spying on private American citizens, elected officials, and journalists at home.

~Treasonous outing of a covert CIA officer in order to claim her husband (who proved the President LIED in the State of The Union Address)wasn't worth listening to... HUH?

~Breaking the Geneva Accords to which the USA is a major signatory.

~Driving away our allies.

~Allowing the manufacturing sector in America to close factories move to China for lower labor costs and simultaneously better tax treatment here in the US !?!

~Pandering to fundamentalist nut-jobs who want to control YOUR life as THEY see fit.

~Pandering to the gun industry over the safety of the public, and the export of guns to Mexico where they shoot at US custom and drug agents.

THERE IS NOTHING GOOD ABOUT A NEOCONSERVATIVE, A POLITICAL FUNDAMENTALIST, OR ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS THEM.

Posted by: onestring | July 22, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

The more the rising Republicans like Thule, Kyle and Cantor speak out and ambitiously take action the sadder and more pathetic the state of the Republic seems. Thule and Kyle (after the Sotomayer hearings) and Cantor every day show themselves to be mindless and creepy empty-headed bimbos. If I were a Republican I would be cringing. This stupid NRA-paid for amendment makes a pure ass of Thule. He should be laughed off stage by his constituents.

Posted by: walden1 | July 22, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

"Somehow driving away from a place that sells booze is not a problem - thousands upon thousands of deaths from drunk driving notwithstanding."

You might want to fire whoever is giving you legal advice.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

"Our forefathers were not plagued with leftist, socialist drivel. They recognized individual rights, responsibilities and what to do when those were abridged - either by the state or by another citizen."

Also, it took them like five minutes to fire a shot.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

"I mean, isn't crime committed by those who break the law? So if you make a law banning ownership of guns, what makes you think that criminals will say "oh, dang, now the government says I can't have a gun. Guess I won't commit crimes anymore." Criminals by definition break laws. Make all the gun-control laws you want. Criminals will still have guns."

I think the best way to handle this is to become really draconian on registration. If you own a gun and it's not registered, you go to jail. Simple as that. If a gun is registered under your name is used in a crime, you're going to be responsible. If you lose a gun, you'd better report it quick.

This protects the law abiding gun owners while making responsibility for the firearms really important. If you can't own a gun responsibly, either don't own one or go to jail.

And we need more cops in high crime areas.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

sourpuss puts it well
"As long as Senator Thune is consistant in the application of cross-border rights. If meeting the qualifications to get a concealed-weapon license in South Dakota implies the right to use the licensed behavior in Illinois, then, it must also follow that meeting the qualifications to get a marriage license in Iowa implies the right to use the licensed behavior in South Dakota. Right?"

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

"Sincerely,
the political effort by leftists to remove God and any discussion of moral responsibility from our schools and government, and instead teach kids that there is no right and wrong...it's all 'relative'."

You know, I went to public school. Now we weren't taught about religion. We were taught to respect each other, to show courtesy, to remember the Golden Rule. All of this was taught without the involvement of god. We weren't given the promises of heaven or the threat of hell. Our reward would be a more pleasant classroom and those who treat others well would receive the same treatment in return.

It makes sense. Only a religious nutjob thinks that secularism and morality are mutually exclusive.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

VirginiaConservative, July 22, 2009 12:12 PM
"On the contrary - I would submit that one is infinity more safe in either of the Dakotas, even with their frightening nazi like gun laws - than in the cesspool of NYC.
But thats just me. I deal in facts, not emotionally laden, partisan garbage."

Have you noticed there is a huge difference in the number of people per sq/mile in NYC compared to the Dakotas? But don't let facts get in your way when name calling works better.

If Senator Thune is making his first foray in to national politics with a concealed weapons bill more power to him. It shows how shallow the GOP has become if they see this type of bill as Americas greatest concern.
Thune is going after Palin's base so who knows maybe it will be Palin/Thune in 2012.

http://www.rightwingnews.com/mt331/2007/02/john_thunes_choochoo_to_nowher.php

Posted by: knjincvc | July 22, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I just disagree with the extremists to the left (like chrisfox8) who believe that crime is caused by those who carry hunting rifles in their trucks,

==

That isn't what I wrote

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Well, I am glad that vote in the Senate went well.

So we have another day of laughing at Republicans and their nut-bar issues.

We can see here that Republicans are not just the party of NO. They do have an agenda for change, like, repealing gun control laws even in the face of States Rights.

Me? I am worried about things that matter, like jobs, jobs and jobs.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 22, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

khrun1 - I can only speak for Virginia and the answer is yes, you do have to prove proficiency. Keeping up the skills is not addressed in the 5 year renewal process.

For myself - and I can probably speak for most ccw permit holders, we take the responsibility seriously and shoot on a VERY regular basis. I did before I got the permit. I am a competitive shooter, so for me its a way of life.

Keep in mind, while I appreciate your concern about the skills of the average CCW holder - do some research on police and security guards and THEIR proficiency.

Thats not a pretty picture.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Khrun1 asks
"A quick question for those who have a Concealed Carry Permit, are you required to have some training in the use of your weapon in order to be allowed to carry a concealed weapon?"

Good question. First, I don't have a permit. But the answer is "it depends". As in, it depends on where you live. Scroll down, VA Conservative describes their requirements which apparently include some kind of training. Further dwon, Gallenod says VT doesn't even require a permit. Here in MN I'm fairly certain that training is encouraged but not mandatory.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1, I see the same disconnect.

Guns and cars are similar in that they both can be dangerous in the hands of people who have violent intent or are untrained, impulsive, careless or just plain stupid.

(Even experienced hunters can have accidents with firearms, though. Just ask our shotgun-wielding former vice president.)

While the Supreme Court recently ruled that the 2nd Ammendment refers to an individual right to bear arms, the courts (including the Supremes) have upheld right of individual states to impose reasonable regulation on that right, including requiring permits and successfully completing some type of training prior to granting a particular permit.

With cars, you need a driver's license.

In either case, though, there are people who will drive a car or carry a weapon without license or permit simply because they don't care.

Despite differences in licensing laws,
states allow drivers from other states to drive on their roads despite the absence of a "right to drive" in the Constitution becuase the primary purpose of a car is transportation and most driving license requirements and traffic laws are fairly similar from state to state.

The primary purpose of a firearm is to cause injury or death and weapon permit laws differ widely from state to state. Thune's proposal appears to be an attempt to trump the states' current right to individually regulate firearms with a blanket Federal policy wrapped in the 2nd Ammendment.

I can see the veins throbbing in Antonin Scalia's head now as he tries to decide which way to vote on this one, though I could see him coming down on the side of the states on this one.

Posted by: Gallenod | July 22, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

As long as Senator Thune is consistant in the application of cross-border rights. If meeting the qualifications to get a concealed-weapon license in South Dakota implies the right to use the licensed behavior in Illinois, then, it must also follow that meeting the qualifications to get a marriage license in Iowa implies the right to use the licensed behavior in South Dakota. Right?

Posted by: sourpuss | July 22, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Vote for the bill with a sunset provision of 3 years with funding for a independant committee to track and evaulate

All Americans would agree with that. Few democrats will agree with the results, though. It will prove their hysteria, as usual, groundless. As far as only republicans being killed - thats highly unlikely. If anyone is killed, past history will prove that they are criminals - and past history says they support Obama.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

A quick question for those who have a Concealed Carry Permit, are you required to have some training in the use of your weapon in order to be allowed to carry a concealed weapon? And as a part of the reason for the Second Amendment is to ensure a well-regulated (and ready)militia is available, shouldn't people who own guns be required to practice and maintain proficiency in the use of the gun you own? These are just a couple of informative questions about this issue I have.

Now on the issue of Senator Thune introducing this bill, even if it doesn't pass, he's gotten what he needed, a bit of publicity and a marker or two on the NRA side and even with the voters in his state.

Is the law foolish? I honestly don't know. I would not have any issue with it if there is a requirement for people to show proficiency in the use of a gun including a test similar where one goes in an area and is presented with cut-outs of criminals and innocent bystanders and make sure you hit the right person, like in the old cop shows. I think that instead of the name calling why not have a reasoned debate on the issue instead of this regurgitation of soundbites on both sides.

Finally on Crist's statement on Sotomayor, Mark in Austin says "Crist v. Sotomayor? A calculated risk with Cubano voters, but in terms of political capital expended, by echoing his Cubano opponent, it probably became a freebie."

There are two arguments on this. Florida's Latino community is not as homogeneous as it was, say 20 years ago. First the Cuban-American community is not as bent out of shape over Fidel Castro, than say, 30-40 years ago when the Cuban-American National Foundation could count on an almost universal support from the Cuban community. Additionally, there's a big Colombian and Puerto Rican (both born in Puerto Rico and in NYC) community in Florida. Although the Colombians might not be citizens Puerto Ricans are, and they might vote and take exeption on the Sotomayor comments.

This brings me to the second point, Mel Martinez, who is a Cuban American, a Republican, and one of Florida's US Senators, has come publicly in favor of Sotomayor probably out of this concern. Rubio may be coming from Crist's right and the governor might be having a bout of "me-tooism" but you need to move to the center on the general election and those commentaries might hurt either Crist or Rubio on the general election.

Posted by: Kruhn1 | July 22, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Crist doesn't get a vote, what is he going to do, the election is not until next year. As a Floridian this is a non starter. The party of No says NO! Wow.

As far as Thune's little gambit is concerned, as a radical Democrat I would hope the Democrats would jump on the bandwagon. Vote for the bill with a sunset provision of 3 years with funding for a independant committee to track and evaulate
how it works. Then bring it back before the Senate with known results. We may assume that it may cost a few lives, but they will probably be republicans anyway.

But it should be against the law to conceal it, in plain sight, so we can spot the idiots.

Posted by: ORNOT | July 22, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

"chrisfox8 wrote: Well-said.

By the way, a lot of these goons wear a gun indoors too."

Hey Chris, we don't besmirch you for wearing women's underwear in the confines of your house. We don't tell you that you cannot put gerbel up your ... We don't dictate that you can't hug trees. We are tolerant LAW-ABIDING people, who would just like to defend ourselves from CRIMINALS. We are not giving CRIMINALS this right.

Posted by: civilrightist | July 22, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

So let me see if have this right -- Thune and other right wingers want to force states to abide by concealed carry laws passed in other states, but at the same time they are adamant that the constitutional principle of "full faith and credit" doesn't apply to all marriages legally performed in other states.

I would hope that if this legislation is really moving forward someone will introduce an amendment along the same principles repealing the so-called Defense of Marriage Act - at least it would demonstrate some consistency.

Posted by: terje1 | July 22, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - if I may... I don't think Vermont's example will fly. I think this applies to permit holders. I may be wrong.

Virginia used to be like Ma in the sense that only the politically connected could received a permit.

That thinking was the impetus for "shall issue" concealed carry.

Virginia changed from a "good ol boy" only connected could carry - regardless of training or history - to a well regulated system of background checks and mandatory training - unless the permit applicant can prove his/her capabilities. Military experience, competitive firearms experience and so on. Actually, I don't think there are so many more "and so ons."

It is been an absolute success. Proven, documented success. Why the feverish opposition is baffling.

Now there is a push for carry in restaurants. Of course, there is a great deal of opposition to this - much of it from the same folks who will slam a couple of martinis and then drive home....

Somehow driving away from a place that sells booze is not a problem - thousands upon thousands of deaths from drunk driving notwithstanding.

But that is the American rationale. Not very rational - but thats what drives elections.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

TEAM OBAMA BEING OUTGUNNED BY EXTREME RIGHT?

No comments here about the fact that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is siding with the gun lobby on this one.

If the Dems can't even get their act together on interstate gun-toting, how can they hope to accomplish health care reform or anything else of substance?

Obama should have taken Reid to the woodshed on this issue.

Actually, the Thune proposal is emblematic of the grassroots authoritarianism that has subverted democracy and the rule of law at the grassroots -- apparently under the radar of POTUS, Emanuel, Axelrod & Co.

Team Obama: Wake up and smell the police state that you enable by your naivete:

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "GESTAPO USA" (see "stream" or "stories" listing.)

Posted by: scrivener50 | July 22, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

VirginiaConservative writes
"The bottom line is that there is a great deal of unnecessary hysteria involved. If people who disagree with Thune's legislation actually did honest research, they would be hard pressed to come up with rational arguments."


See, we can agree on that. And you didn't even have to say 'bedwetters' to make your point.

The state of MN has reciprocity with about 15 other states - our permits are valid there & their permits are valid here. That seems to make sense to me - the SC has decided that local jurisdictions can decide appropriate local requirements for gun ownership. Isn't that the appropriate remedy - letting the states decide - rather than the Feds coming in and trying to write one rule that overrides local jurisdiction? Given the existing reciprocity arrangements, isn't Thune's proposal redundant & therfore unnecessary?

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

RE: Crist Opposes Sotomayor

Chris,

This is an intriguing, but not unexpected twist.

Primaries inevitably move candidates towards the ideology of their respective bases.

The two-fold question is: Will this cost Crist a substantial segment of the Hispanic vote; and How much will this hurt Crist / benefit Meeks in the general!

Posted by: sverigegrabb | July 22, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Gallenod writes
"I'd reword that slightly to say "...whatever state's concealed-carry laws are most permissive..." "

Agreed. Your phrasing is more accurate than mine.

"I haven't read Thune's proposal, but if it does what it sound like, would it make people subject only to their own state's laws regardless of where they travel? For example, someone from Vermont could carry their permitless concealed weapon into Massachusetts as long as they can prove they're a Vermont resident?"

Thune's law, as I understand it, says that if you have a permit to carry in your own state, that your permit is valid in other states - but that you have to follow the other states laws. If you don't need a permit in VT, I suspect you cannot carry in MA - even if you can prove you're a VT resident.

Here in MN all you need is approval from the sherrif to acquire a permit. My understanding is that MA is very restrictive - like off-duty cops & others who can prove a need in their line of work (can anyone confirm?). My understanding is that under Thune's law if I have a permit in MN, I would be allowed to carry in MA without having to meet their standards for carrying. Where there's a disconnect, in my mind, is that on the one hand Thune says out-of-staters have to follow the local state's laws, which makes sense. But he's apparently excepting whatever the law is that grant's the permit to carry in the first place.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

sv, actually, in America, guns are very highly regulated. Crime isn't, so that is the difference. Having lived and hunted in several foreign countries, I can tell you in some ways it was less intrusive there than here.

There is no compelling reason to bring back the brady bunch's assault weapons ban, because it was proven to be non effective. The Clintons,brady and reno were very interested in getting leftist votes and donations - but remarkably disinterested in prosecuting felons. Assault weapons are proven to be only a tiny percentage of weapons used in crime and many of those are proven to have been stolen. Recently a New Jersey chief of police went on a rant over "assault shotguns" after a shoot out in Jersey. He clearly blamed "one of the southern states with more liberal gun laws." Problem is, the gun was stolen. He went on to say that this shotgun was for one purpose and one purpose only - "to hunt man." he then went on to say it was identical to his issue shotguns. Hmmmm. Police in the business of hunting men, now? Also turns out the shooter was a repeat offender. One of the officers shot had already arrested the guy on a gun charge. So, inquiring minds have to ask - is it North Carolina who released a dangerous criminal to shoot those officers - or was it New Jersey? Was it North Carolina's gun laws that caused the gun to be stolen by someone who should have been in jail?

Have another donut, chief.


The bottom line is that there is a great deal of unnecessary hysteria involved. If people who disagree with Thune's legislation actually did honest research, they would be hard pressed to come up with rational arguments. "Ooooh, I don't like guns" is not a rational argument.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

To rally their base it seems Republicans will leave any kind of good sense behind by pushing incredibly naive gun bills on the American public. But how many times can they go to the well with this type of legislation? Probably until people are allowed to carry concealed nuclear weopons across state borders! Remember nuclear weapons don't kill, people who use them do.

Posted by: dre7861 | July 22, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Thune wants to kill NYers and other innocents. Thats rich. Where is the empirical data which proves CCW folks are killing innocents?


On the contrary - I would submit that one is infinity more safe in either of the Dakotas, even with their frightening nazi like gun laws - than in the cesspool of NYC.

But thats just me. I deal in facts, not emotionally laden, partisan garbage.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Chris,

I know the ire of the entire Right wing will fall on me for this, but in almost all European countries, the sale of guns is highly regulated.

Even in the UK, which paradoxically long forbade police constables to be armed, yet raised the slaughter of wild animals to a national pastime for 'gentlemen'--far more than was needed to provide actual food--there is still a great deal of control of privately-owned firearms.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right_to_keep_and_bear_arms

In the US, of course, it's entirely different, and with the (now-distant) history of Native Americans lurking behind every tree, with the huge stretches of land between homesteads, the lack of an organised constabulary, it was natural that a gun culture would develop in completely different ways to Europe. Still, that was then (1791), this is now (2009).

I know, I know, the revered Second Amendment, the cliché that 'Guns don't kill people, people kill people', 'Moses' pronouncement that his guns would have to be wrested from his cold, dead hand, etc., etc. Ad nauseum (or, to put it in purely American terms, 'Yadda, yadda, yadda').

The popular- and news media are also complicit, having glorified all the filmed and televised gun violence--emphasis on violence--for so many decades that, with the occasional demurs after a particularly gory shooting--it has seemingly become the norm.

Still, the free flow of guns of all types in this country has facilitated their falling into the hands of 'bad guys' and caused endless death and misery en masse. Would Columbine or Virginia Tech have happened if these 'sickos' had been denied access to firearms? Not nearly on the same scale. And that doesn't even begin to take into account all the hundreds of thousands of 'non-newsworthy' victims of gun violence.

The universal urge for mankind to destroy is inborn, but to allow mankind such laughably easy access to highly efficient killing machines is uniquely American.

Politically, there has been no will to curb gun sales--even assault weapons--since 2000, and the NRA has positioned itself so that gun 'freedom' has become a litmus test that few politician dare not pass if they expect to remain viable.

Now comes arch-Conservative Senator Thune with his amendment to further dismantle gun laws so that firearms can flow freely across--and between--all states, assuring that there will be even more 'Columbines'. Is this REALLY the mark of an evolved, civilised society? Or is it a sign of further descent into chaos and bloodshed?

I apologise in advance to all who might be offended, but this is merely an outsider's perspective which, I hope, might illuminate to some degree.

Posted by: sverigegrabb | July 22, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

If Thune wants to kill NYers and other innocents, Schumer should attach an amendment repealing wheat subsidies.

Posted by: Garak | July 22, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

VIP - actually the constitution guarantees the individual right to keep and bear arms - as recently as in Heller. It does not permit - nor preclude concealed carry.

Actually, if someone had brought that up in the time of our forefathers there probably would have been much discussion as to whether to beat the person into insensibility or laugh them out of the colonies.

Our forefathers were not plagued with leftist, socialist drivel. They recognized individual rights, responsibilities and what to do when those were abridged - either by the state or by another citizen.

Today the left wrings their collective hands over crime and does their best to indict and demonize law abiding citizens over criminals.

Progressives? Hardly. They all sound and act like they have undergone lobotomies.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Amazing...the people who want to abolish the second amendment and take our guns are the same ones who think Europe has better healthcare and better governments ...hilarious if it were not frightening. These gun-grabbers are the same people that think terrorists are misunderstood and should be labeled 'conflicted religious zealots'. They would rather lay down arms (here and abroad) and proclaim to the world that the last 230+ years of the American experiment has failed. These disgraces haven't a clue or any connection to the blood sweat and tears that were shed in many worldwide and internal conflicts during the great history of this country so they could have the right to call our past and traditions barbaric. (Remember that right to say what you want is only grounded in another right that comes after it) There beliefs and practices are akin to the ideology that brought another civilization to its knees 1600 years ago.

Posted by: civilrightist | July 22, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

DDAWD:

"However, when it comes to discerning the intent of the founding fathers, I do think the anti-gun people are getting it wrong."

Dear heavens....could it be that I, a right-wing conservative lunatic, could actually be in agreement with (and quite possibly LEFT of) DDAWD on something? Must be yesterday's eclipse upsetting the political balance....

I've always believed the 2nd Amendment guaruantees the right to carry a firearm, but have personally been troubled by those in the NRA and on the right who seem to want to stretch the meaning to include ANY firearm, including machine guns and bazookas, if that happens to be your preference.

I'm in agreement that some amount of regulation is necessary. After all, should I be able to arm my backyard with a couple missles if I have the acreage, money, and know-how?.

I just disagree with the extremists to the left (like chrisfox8) who believe that crime is caused by those who carry hunting rifles in their trucks, and if only we could ban all firearms from private ownership then the crime problem would be solved.

I mean, isn't crime committed by those who break the law? So if you make a law banning ownership of guns, what makes you think that criminals will say "oh, dang, now the government says I can't have a gun. Guess I won't commit crimes anymore." Criminals by definition break laws. Make all the gun-control laws you want. Criminals will still have guns.


Posted by: dbw1 | July 22, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

This amendment seems like a bit of a reach for me simply because the states (as is their right) have differing gun laws. My ability to carry in Vermont (or some similarly lax state) would presumably be significantly different than my ability to carry in say New York. I don't quite understand the reciprocity agreements that each state has but if I was allowed to carry in a lax state with some crime on my record would this law allow me to carry in every state based on the issuance of a permit under very lax laws (especially if the other state did not allow someone with a similar record to obtain a permit)? If that is the case, I don't think I care for this bill.

Posted by: robbinsjoh | July 22, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Who's the bedwetter, the guy who respects his fellow man and presumes he is safe and secure without taking steps to secure himself, or the guy who can't leave his house and feel safe without strapping on some artifiical manhood first?

You must work for Virginia Tech. They respected their fellow man, and boy oh boy did they feel SAFE after refusing to allow qualified concealed carry on campus.

How much respect would you have had, and how safe would you have felt in one of those rooms with the doors chained shut and a lunatic killing your friends one by one. And you, you self important, self inflated, respecter of your fellow man, weeps while you wait your turn - because you cannot even defend yourself. What a pathetic existence.

Thats the left's bedwetting position in a nutshell.

Not for me - not for my family. You can hurl all the childish insults my way. I really don't care. At the end of the day, me and mine will be alive.

I really don't care what happens to you.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

This is a bad, hypocritical move. I'm a Virginia permit holder, but I am also a strong supporter of States' rights, which this law would violate. The 2nd amendment does not guarantee the right to carry a CONCEALED weapon. Permission to carry a CONCEALED weapon is a State-awarded privilege, not a Constitutionally protected right, in my opinion. As such, each State should be allowed to create and enforce their own laws concerning CONCEALED weapons.

Posted by: VIPR1AB | July 22, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

chrisfox8:
"After all is said and done I think we'd be better off without the Second Amendment. I think it should be repealed. We'd be a safer nation, we'd have vastly fewer murders..."

Hmmmm, interesting conclusion. Our country had very low crime until, say, the 1960's. Now you assert that the answer to the problem is to repeal the right to have a gun granted by the 2nd Amendment, which was the same before 1960 as it has been since.

That MUST be the problem, you know, the right to carry a gun. But I wonder if maybe, perhaps, just maybe there is something else that led to escalating crime rates since the 1960's. What could it be....what could it be...what could it....

Sincerely,
the political effort by leftists to remove God and any discussion of moral responsibility from our schools and government, and instead teach kids that there is no right and wrong...it's all 'relative'.

Posted by: dbw1 | July 22, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

the nuts are going to carry guns anyway.
Might as well give us decent, lawful folks a fighting chance. "God created man and Samuel Colt created them equal."

Posted by: charlietuna666 | July 22, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

the nuts are going to carry guns anyway.
Might as well give us decent, lawful folks a fighting chance. "God created man and Samuel Colt created them equal."

Posted by: charlietuna666 | July 22, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I can't think of any people I least want to protect me than a bunch of trigger happy yahoos who get their kicks shooting up the local flora and fauna. It's hard to imagine what politicians think is the benefit of putting more guns into the pockets of more people, the majority of whom shouldn't be allowed to carry anything more lethal than a can opener; not to mention alienating every urban mayor and policeman in the country. This move may put Thune in the national spotlight, but it also shows him to be incapable of understanding the world outside of South Dakota.

Posted by: Koko3 | July 22, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

it is nice and helpful!!
All my hot Ageless friends on _ Agelover. c o m __ are talking about this!! BTW, the place where all hot cougars,sexy old folks and young beauties meet, mingle and more...

Posted by: maggielindia | July 22, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

"So Thune is in favor of a new federal law to trump state laws. Typical Republican. Since he undboutedly knows the Second Amendement by heart, I'd be interested to know what part of a well-regulated militia his measure has to do with."

You know, a lot of people make the argument that the well-regulated militia part of the amendment means the gun right is a group right, not an individual right.

I'm not sure I buy that. That phrase strikes me as simply a rationale for the amendment rather than a restriction on the amendment. I say this because it is written that way. Also, all the other items in the Bill of Rights are all individual rights. I don't think they'd throw in something that was a group right. It seems to me that to require a formation of a militia as a precondition to owning guns means to have government involvement in gun ownership and that seems 100% antithetical to what the Bill of Rights is supposed to be about.

Don't get me wrong, I've spent a lot of years of my life living in places that could REALLY use some gun control. I do think we need to do something. However, when it comes to discerning the intent of the founding fathers, I do think the anti-gun people are getting it wrong.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 22, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

More proof that the Republican Party is a danger to this great nation. Its current "leaders" hail from small, fringe states that no longer look anything like America.

Thune -- South Dakota, which hasn't added any population to speak of in 100 years. Even combined with North Dakota would still be a joke.
Palin -- Alaska. Tiny, lily white population.
Romney -- Utah. Small, lily white.
Huckabee -- Arkansas. Small, backwards, inbred.
Barbour -- Mississippi. Nuff said!

If Bob McConnell wins the governor's race in Virginia, he'd be a better choice in 2012 than any of these nuts and rubes. Of course, I hope he loses to Deeds in their rematch, but it will be very close either way.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | July 22, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

bsimon1: "Thune's law essentially establishes whatever state's concealed-carry laws are weakest as the national standard."

I'd reword that slightly to say "...whatever state's concealed-carry laws are most permissive..."

Which would be Vermont, which does not require a permit for concealed carry. You can pack whatever legally obtainable firearm you can fit under your clothing.

Then again, Vermont has one of the lowest per capita violent crime rates in the country, possibly because potential assailants have to be a tad more careful about who they pick as victims.

(Or maybe it's just too cold for half the year to think much about commiting violent crimes.)

I haven't read Thune's proposal, but if it does what it sound like, would it make people subject only to their own state's laws regardless of where they travel? For example, someone from Vermont could carry their permitless concealed weapon into Massachusetts as long as they can prove they're a Vermont resident?

It will be interesting to see what the Supreme Court has to say, because if this passes, it will likely get there at some point.

Posted by: Gallenod | July 22, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

The gun thing is like healthcare .. other countries do it differently, and those countries have a much better answer. In countries with gun bans people are more free by any definition not centered on the right to bear arms, just as their healthcare is cheaper and more available. But over here all we hear is how horrible things would be with socialized medicine or no right to carry guns.

Not a month goes by without some nutjob shooting up a schoolyard or a community center. Someone with a history of mental illness who had no trouble getting a handgun. How bloody idiotic.

And just look at the fanatic language they use .. "gun-grabbers." Pathetic frightened children.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

"...[Crist] appears more concerned about angering the GOP primary electorate by supporting Sotomayor than risking the ire of Hispanics in a general election..."

You remember back when Clarence Thomas was undergoing confirmation by the Senate? You remember how nearly every single media story at the time suggested or implied that a vote by a Democrat against Clarence Thomas because of his conservative views might risk the Democrats standing with African-Americans? You remember that?

Yeah, neither do I....

Posted by: dbw1 | July 22, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Yes, by all means let's work to put a gun in the hands of all Americans. We're such a stable society, the vast majority of us level-headed, peace-loving citizens who always manage to settle their differences diplomatically without resorting to violence. It worked in the Wild West, where a gun in every hand guaranteed that peace would prevail. Oh, that's right, it didn't really work out all that well I recall, that's why it was called the Wild West. But nevertheless, let me carry a gun at all times. I'm sick of being tailgated and people talking on cell phones while driving and just being rude in general. It's high time that these people were taught a lesson. Level headed folks like me should have the option to draw a bead on these shameless, irresponsible fools endangering other people's lives.

Posted by: curtb | July 22, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

it is nice and helpful!!
All my hot Ageless friends on _ Agelover. c o m __ are talking about this!! BTW, the place where all hot cougars,sexy old folks and young beauties meet, mingle and more...

Posted by: maggielindia | July 22, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

I don't know why all the gun-grabbers have problem with Senator Thune proposal. I have a carry permit in all the states I go to with reciprocity. Most of the gun-grabbers do not understand that this amendment would consolidate all of the various requirements and have all concealed carry permit holders in a national database . Just think about THAT Gun-Grabbers; you could have a list that would tell authorities if someone had a CCP even when they are out of state!!!!! Senator Thune proposal only serves to eliminate the discrepancies and injustices that happen to LAW-ABIDING citizens when crossing state jurisdiction (Think...Can I have my gun in the glove box or the trunk)

Posted by: civilrightist | July 22, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Who's the bedwetter, the guy who respects his fellow man and presumes he is safe and secure without taking steps to secure himself, or the guy who can't leave his house and feel safe without strapping on some artifiical manhood first?

==

Well-said.

By the way, a lot of these goons wear a gun indoors too.

After all is said and done I think we'd be better off without the Second Amendment. I think it should be repealed. We'd be a safer nation, we'd have vastly fewer murders, and the rounding up of extant firearms would take up a few of these freaks on their cold dead fingers pledge, raising the national IQ by fifteen or twenty points

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

So Thune is in favor of a new federal law to trump state laws. Typical Republican. Since he undboutedly knows the Second Amendement by heart, I'd be interested to know what part of a well-regulated militia his measure has to do with.

Posted by: Sutter | July 22, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

chris - you have it backwards. Its not the right with their panties in a wad - its the hysterical left.

==

Left? In America? Not since '39. You're paranoid. The NRA loves you, go write them a check.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

virginiaconservative writes
"Its the bedwetters coming unglued."


Who's the bedwetter, the guy who respects his fellow man and presumes he is safe and secure without taking steps to secure himself, or the guy who can't leave his house and feel safe without strapping on some artifiical manhood first?

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

chris - you have it backwards. Its not the right with their panties in a wad - its the hysterical left.

All the right did was tack on a common sense self defense initiative to the bill.

Its the bedwetters coming unglued.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

The NRA lost me years ago when they refered to ATF agents and law enforcement agents who put their butts on the line every day as "Jack Booted thugs"
Even Poppy Bush dropped his membership after this comment.

They also defended Tim McVeigh's and his ilk's right to buy as much explosives as they want with no control or regulation.

Posted by: MerrillFrank | July 22, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I listened to the usual drivel which comes out of Turban Durban's mouth in amazement. Here this gomer is moaning about law abiding gunowners, while a terrorist organization holds a conference in his home state.

The duplicity and ignorance of the left knows no bounds.

Concealed carry is a qualified success in 48 of 50 states. In virtually every case, liberals shrieked about the streets being soaked in blood, vigilantism running rampant and on and on and on.

All to have gobs of egg smeared all over their greasy little faces.

Yet the drama and hyperbole goes on unabated.

One would think that the left would be more careful about what comes out of their pieholes after being proven utterly wrong so many times. But then again, they still think socialism is just peachy.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | July 22, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Another vital cutting-edge issue. Wow. The economy is tanking, we're stuck in two wars, North Korea and Iran are almost nuclear nations, Israel is stealing land again, fifty million Americans have no health insurance, and what's the GOP got its undies bunched up over? Concealed weapons.

Why, that's almost as much of a vital issue as reverse discrimination.

Just another way to rile up the filth.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | July 22, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

mibrooks27 writes: "RickJ - Liberals like you make me sick. You squawk about "gay rights" and the equality of man and turn around and use homosexuality as an insult, with which to bash your political opponents over the head. Being gay is or lesbian does not lessen someones humanity. Love is NOT a political issue and I am sick and tired of you so called liberals trotting it out as if it were somehow dirty and disgusting. You are a cretin. Your position on gin control demonstrates that. You insulting remarks about homosexuals has no place in this forum or anywhere else. It is gutter talk befitting of a morally and intellectually bankrupt idiot, a classic bigot. Go away!"

I'm a gay male who finds closeted Republicans morally bankrupt and disgusting. They should go away. And you're post shows how much tolerance you have.

As for my position on gun control, I didn't state any in my post. My point is that there are far more pressing issues for the country than to hold debates on this 'non-issue'... Learn to read and take a breath before you post your own hate!

Posted by: RickJ | July 22, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Make no mistake: It wasn't anything by Thune that beat Tommy D.
It was Karl Rove going for the throat with a, full-court press that included bringing President Bush into the state to campaign -That was the first time that a president campaigned so actively against a majority leader. of the other party.

Posted by: Anadromous2 | July 22, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Mark in Austin
Crist v. Sotomayor? A calculated risk with Cubano voters, but in terms of political capital expended, by echoing his Cubano opponent, it probably became a freebie.

Maybe not. He might have blown it with other Latino voters. There are many transplanted Nuyouricans in South Fla. Sotomayor's mom lives in the Broward, Sunrise area. Many others live in the I-5 coridor and Orlando. How far does he have move to the right. Wonder if Rubio is palling around the the terrorists Poseda and Orlando Bosch.

Posted by: MerrillFrank | July 22, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

molsonmich writes
"Is there really, truly a problem carrying a concealed weapon from South Dakota to, oh I dunno let's say, North Dakota?"

It depends. Some states already have a reciprocity of sorts & honor one another's concealed-carry permits. Its not an issue near & dear to me, so I'm not an expert, but I'm told that our MN permits are honored in SoDak, for example (and a dozen or so other states). Which underscores the earlier point: this is an issue for states, not the feds.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

RickJ - Liberals like you make me sick. You squawk about "gay rights" and the equality of man and turn around and use homosexuality as an insult, with which to bash your political opponents over the head. Being gay is or lesbian does not lessen someones humanity. Love is NOT a political issue and I am sick and tired of you so called liberals trotting it out as if it were somehow dirty and disgusting. You are a cretin. Your position on gin control demonstrates that. You insulting remarks about homosexuals has no place in this forum or anywhere else. It is gutter talk befitting of a morally and intellectually bankrupt idiot, a classic bigot. Go away!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | July 22, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

This is smart politics, actually. Valerie Jarrett and a bunch if other Obama insiders are gun control fanatics. Most American's, poll results showing somewhere between 62% and 69%, are opposed to any new gun control laws, even opposed to the so called Brady Laws. The proposed law provides a very clear graphic example to the voting public of just how far these advisor are from what most American's want and believe.

Again, if you read the polls at all, most voters are opposed to job outsourcing, want the government to do something about it; are opposed to guest worker visas and want those programs ended; are opposed to bailing out Wall Street banks and would like nothing more than to put the "financial services industry" out of business; and are opposed to any further gun control, actively want to regain the right to own handguns to protect themselves and their families. Obama, the Northeast Democratic leadership and the big city Democrats stand precisely opposite mainstream views on all of these issues and it is going to cost them dearly.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | July 22, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

As an NRA member, I support Sen. John Thune and his measure to allow concealed weapons in every state.

I also feel everyone should be allowed to bring their guns to schools, sporting events, church services, airports, libraries, and workplaces. The NRA lobbyists recently pressured the Senate to pass a measure to allow concealed guns in National Parks. Why not allow people to arm themselves anywhere else they go? So what if occasionally a few innocent bystanders get blown away in the cross fire --- such is the price of freedom!

I also believe all law abiding citizens age 21 or over should be provided a gun with ammo by the Government free of charge. As the NRA has proven, more guns = less crime and the fact is that every adult cannot always afford to buy a gun. Forget about a waiting period -- upon request,just issue a loaded gun when someone turns 21.

In my case, I have been in trouble with the law several times over the past 3 years (I have a bad temper) so I have been having difficulty buying a weapon at the local gun store. If I had gotten one from the Government 10 years ago when I turned 21, I would have been well armed to defend myself all those years and probably would have blown away a few criminals and terrorists like the low-life who dented my car last month. Thanks to the support of the NRA, I was able to buy .44 Magnum Colt and AK-47 assault rifle at a Gun Show recently without any background check. Actually, I brought a few extra guns and rifles to sell to my buddies who also have had problems with the law. Let's make sure we keep supporting the NRA's opposition to banning assault rifles, its opposition to background checks by unlicensed dealers, and its opposition to limiting the number of weapons that can be purchased at the same time so that good folks like me can provide plenty of powerful guns to our friends who, in turn, can sell them "South of the Border" or in inner cities
and make some nice money on the side!! And, thank God, there is the Tiahrt Amendment sponsored by the NRA
that makes it difficult for law enforcement to trace the source of firearms brought and sold.

Finally, how about we get the law changed and make machine guns and granade launchers available to the public!!
After all, terrorists and criminals are able to obtain such weapons so why can't a "good old boy" like me have the same fire power to defend myself?
Does not the 2nd Admendment give us the right to be as equally armed as our adversaries? NRA -- are you listening??

(P.S. At the NRA Annual Convention, I was talking to someone who works at the NRA as an accountant. He told me that
gun show promoters, gun manufacturers and gun shop owners are the biggest contributors to the NRA and, without them, the organization could not afford to pay LaPierre and Cox the multi-million compensation packages they receive. I think every penny these wealthy, gun-loving guys get paid is well deserved!!)

Posted by: dh110713 | July 22, 2009 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I like Thune, and believe he would do well. Sure, he's hated by the radical left for beating up on their man Dashcle in 2004. But he's loved in SD as a great US Senator and sincere policy wonk. I do think leadership on 2nd Amendment legislation will land him extremely high positives in South Dakota & nationally. I wouldn't be surprised to see Thune win with 60% or better for reelection in 2010. He even lead Stephanie Sadlin in a recent poll 53%-39%, that's why she isn't running. Sadlin could have made an impact running for governor, but choose to stay in the House. I wonder if current Gov. Rounds will make a bid against Sadlin? If he did, I bet she would change her mind & run for governor. Either way, Thune is in a position every Republican wishes they were.

Interesting that Crist came out against Sotomayor. I think that's a losing fight for Republicans. Crist will certainly march through the primary & the general election. He's already so popular he's almost unbeatable. It's surprising that Kendrick Meeks is risking his political career on such an unwinnable race.

Concerning the South Carolina senators, look at their records. Graham is a sincere moderate where DeMint...they don't get more partisan & conservative.

Posted by: reason5 | July 22, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

As long as whacko legislation is being proposed I say it needs to be amended to assure concealed carry in classrooms-but only in Red states, starting in kindergarten.

Posted by: fluxgirl | July 22, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

We need to be able to carry concealed weapons into the halls of congress.

Posted by: Tomcat3 | July 22, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Is there really, truly a problem carrying a concealed weapon from South Dakota to, oh I dunno let's say, North Dakota?

This is legislation designed explicitly to appeal to the NRA.

The NRA, of course, wants this bill to provoke all sorts of debate and get its mailing list all riled up.

Cuz, afterall a contented gun-owner ain't a donor. But a paraonoid gunowner? He can't write out the check fast enough.

Posted by: molsonmich | July 22, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

The Fix writes
"South Dakota Sen. John Thune will step into the national spotlight today..."


I think he is demonstrating the old saw that every Senator looks in the mirror and sees a President.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

AndyR3 writes
"the Supreme Court could very possibly overturn this law as unconstitutional since it disregards multiple state's laws which openly ban concealed weapons. That's on top of the fact that the GOP/NRA howls at the moon about how any federal laws that even talk about guns is an infringement on States' rights."

I agree. Thune's law essentially establishes whatever state's concealed-carry laws are weakest as the national standard. On its own, that seems like a losing battle, not to mention being directly in conflict with the concept of state's rights. Shall we call it 'Cafeteria Conservatism?'

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 22, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Who said there was no "BIPARTISANSHIP", in the Senate? Senator Thume must be the "WATER BOY", for the "NRA", on this piece of Legislation.

It's amazing the only time Democrats and Republicans, seem to work together is when it comes to doing the "DIRT WORK" , for the NRA.

And the NRA's ultimate goal is engage in a "ARMED INSURRECTION." There Lobbyist have got a majority of Senators and Congressman on the "PAYROLL."

Posted by: austininc4 | July 22, 2009 9:47 AM | Report abuse

All these smiling Christian chest-beaters are starting to make me miss the old-fashioned Christian hand-wringers.

Could we have the Christians who worried about their OWN souls back in exchange for these aggressive types using armies to look after the souls of others?

Posted by: margaretmeyers | July 22, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

No, Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D) did not "bow out of a statewide race." She represents the entire state in Congress.

Posted by: sweetsally69 | July 22, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Does Thune reside at the C Street Love Shack?

Posted by: edlharris | July 22, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

John Thune won his seat with a shady deal that arranged a 2.3 BILLION dollar FEDERAL LOAN to a tiny railroad company that planned to get new tracks to the Powder River Basin coal fields. A quiet little inside job that accounted for the biggest federal loan in history.

http://www.rightwingnews.com/mt331/2007/02/john_thunes_choochoo_to_nowher.php

South Dakota is not well-served by this man. (But he sure is!)

Posted by: rowens1 | July 22, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Hope the weepublicans nominate this loser . . . Thune makes Booby Jindal sound like Winston Churchill.

And, thanks, NRA-freaks! -- we've got guns, too . . .

To meet Cheney's goons at the door . . . after his fascist coup d'etat.

Posted by: thesuperclasssux | July 22, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Another republican jerk. This is what they do - legislate crap while more important issues go unresolved. Thune is a worthless piece of donkey dung.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | July 22, 2009 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Thune may not run for president, but he may become an alternative to Crist as a vice presidential candidate in 2012, particularly to a business conservative like Ronmey who (like McCain) may feel a need to reassure "God and Guns" conservatives with his VP pick.

Posted by: Gallenod | July 22, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Is this the best the Republican's can come up with? Thune is just another wingnut a-hole.

Posted by: Doowadiddy | July 22, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

The nation is in crisis and the republicons are worried about making it easier to carry concealed loaded handguns. Brilliant. If you are the type of freak who thnks you need a loaded gun in your pocket at all times you exactly the type of person who should not be allowed to have one.

Posted by: John1263 | July 22, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

The missteps of Palin and Sanford mean Tnune is a very serious contender for 2012. He would get destroyed in a national match-up with Obama, but that doesn't matter to the base that loves his right wing rhetoric and record.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | July 22, 2009 8:13 AM | Report abuse

OMG . . . this is great.

Has anyone heard this guy talk? What a trainwreck!

Thune makes Sister Sarah sound witty and intelligent!

Go for it, weepublicans! -- please nominate HIM!!!!

Another Obama/Biden landslide in 2012!

Posted by: thesuperclasssux | July 22, 2009 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Sorry that should read 'Crist coming out against Sotomayer...'

Posted by: AndyR3 | July 22, 2009 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Crist coming out against Crist won't hurt him in the primary, but it very well may hurt him in the general election. If Meek can make it a race next year (ie the economy gets better, Castro dies and Cuba opens travel, or something comes out about Crist) then he may be able to use this stance to turn the Latino population against Crist.

Also on what planet do people think it is a good idea to let people carry CONCEALED weapons across state lines. Not to mention that the Supreme Court could very possibly overturn this law as unconstitutional since it disregards multiple state's laws which openly ban concealed weapons. That's on top of the fact that the GOP/NRA howls at the moon about how any federal laws that even talk about guns is an infringement on States' rights.
BTW, doesn't Thune look alot like Mark Warner (and a little like the Cripkeeper too).

Posted by: AndyR3 | July 22, 2009 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I guess Thune will raise his profile within the GOP core, but this is hardly a priority issue at present. Maybe if he got involved in one of the more prominent debates of the day, such as healthcare, he'd do more to expand his presence on the national stage...

Crist vs. Sotomayor: what a loser he is. He probably would have walked through the primary against Rubio. Now he's playing me-too for some bizarre reason... Must be worried about the closet door opening.

Posted by: RickJ | July 22, 2009 7:28 AM | Report abuse

GUNS AND BLUSTER?

Yeah, sure... and his campaign song can be "Happiness Is a Warm Gun."

***


WHAT GOOD IS HEALTH CARE REFORM WHEN A FED-ENABLED 'PROGRAM' VIOLATES THE CIVIL AND HUMAN RIGHTS OF THE UNJUSTLY 'TARGETED'?
***

FEMA, Secret Service, FBI, the U.S. military and intel agencies are among the federal enablers of volunteer community policing, anti-terrorism and town watch organizations transmogrified by Bush-Cheney into fronts for a nationwide, civilian Gestapo-like army.

This grassroots-based extrajudicial targeting and punishment "torture matrix" uses covertly implanted GPS tracking devices to stalk, harass, vandalize and terrorize unjustly "targeted" Americans and their families.

When "targets" travel, the GPS system alerts vigilantes affiliated with local units of this American Gestapo, and the harassment follows. Local police cooperation denies these targeted Americans their Constitutional right of equal protection under the law.

Silent, injury- and illness-inducing microwave and laser radiation "directed energy weapons" are being used to torture, and to degrade the lives of targeted citizens -- what could be described as a quiet, ideologically-motivated genocide.

This weaponization of the electromagnetic spectrum is every bit as socially significant as the invention of gunpowder -- but the mainstream media has yet to report in detail on the ramifications.

Victims charge that members of this civilian Gestapo have infiltrated the health care system, calling into question the quality of the services they receive when they need hospital or emergency care.

And companion array of “programs of personal financial destruction — using the IRS as a political weapon — sabotages the finances of “target” families. Their telecommunications and U.S. mail appear to be subject to warrantless surveillance, interception and tampering — including the alteration of financial accounts and credit card and utility billing statements.

This systematic bypass of the American judicial system makes a mockery of the rule of law -- and political "dissidents," "whistle-blowers" and those considered to be social "deviates" are among its prime targets.

Civil rights advocates: Wake up and smell the police state that has co-opted POTUS and a deluded Congress into becoming enablers of vigilante injustice and domestic torture.

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

See "GESTAPO USA" at NowPublic.com/scrivener ("stream" or "stories" list).

Posted by: scrivener50 | July 22, 2009 7:21 AM | Report abuse

vbhoomes - watch Thune.

Crist v. Sotomayor? A calculated risk with Cubano voters, but in terms of political capital expended, by echoing his Cubano opponent, it probably became a freebie.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | July 22, 2009 6:28 AM | Report abuse

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