Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Fallout from Heller decision

There is likely to be a vote in the House this week on a bill to liberalize D.C.'s still restrictive gun laws, enacted temporarily in the wake of the D.C. v. Heller decision by the Supreme Court, but it's unlikely to mean very much. A Mississippi Democrat has introduced legislation -- Congress still controls D.C. though there is some limited home rule allowed -- to eliminate the registration requirements and allow semiautomatic weapons. And last week a committee approved a bill to give D.C. 90 days to come up with laws that comply with the Heller decision without specifying what they should be.

But it's political posturing. Certain conservative Democrats want to be able to vote against restrictive gun laws before the election in November, and since they were a key part of the Dem takeover in 2006, Nancy Pelosi will let them. But the Senate is almost certain not to act, so it won't mean much if anything in terms of actual law.

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