On March 11, the Idaho House of Representatives voted 55-13 to pass Rep. Mark Patterson’s Idaho Federal Firearm, Magazine and Register Ban Enforcement Act, or House Bill 219. The bill would make it illegal for state or local law-enforcement agencies to enforce new federal gun restrictions, especially like those presented in Senator Dianne Feinstein’s bill Assault Weapons Ban of 2013.
According to the bill, violators of the law would be guilty of a misdemeanor and could be subject to a maximum $1,000 fine, a year in prison or both. In addition, there would be no restrictions in place for the ownership of semi-automatic firearms or magazines or requirement to register firearms and their accessories in any manner.
Gee, it’s like our freedom to own arms would not be infringed.
What a gallant step for Idaho. In the continuing nightmare that is the gun control debate, it’s refreshing to see our state take such a firm stand against the out-of-touch and ever-growing federal government.
Of course, the bill has its opponents and has yet to get through the senate.
Democratic Representatives Elaine Smith and Holli Woodings expressed concern that the bill could pit federal and local officials. Woodings fears this would cause Idaho officials to break their oaths.
“They take an oath of office to the United States and the state of Idaho,” Woodings said in an article by the Assocated Press. “I find an inherent flaw in that legislation.”
Woodings and Smith forget that our state law-enforcement officials take an oath to the Constitutions of the U.S. and Idaho. “Each member of the Idaho state police shall take and subscribe to an oath of office to support the constitution and laws of the United States and the state of Idaho, and to honestly and faithfully perform the duties imposed upon him under the provisions of the laws of Idaho as a member of the Idaho state police,” according to House Bill 660, which changed the title of Department of Law Enforcement to Idaho State Police,
The key to this oath is the word “constitution.” While our law enforcement and elected officials swear an oath to support both the Constitution and laws of the U.S. and Idaho, one must remember that the Constitution, according to the supremacy clause, trumps all other laws –federal or state.
Therefore, as long as the federal government faithfully subscribes to the Constitution, then the states can faithfully subscribe to its laws. Currently, the federal government has stepped outside the bounds of the Constitution; therefore, the states cannot abide by its laws faithfully, and they must do what they can to protect citizens’ rights.
What does our own Declaration of Independence tell us? “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,” the declaration says “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it…”
Our representatives are simply adhering to this principal. This is the way every state should be responding toward the current attempts to federally ban guns.
Be proud of Idaho for taking such a tough stance. Support your representatives for supporting your rights.
can be reached at