Today the U.N. passed a sweeping international arms regulation viewed by some as a 2nd Amendment override.
U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS), Max Baucus (D-MT) and James Inhofe (R-OK) – cosponsors of S. Con. Res. 7, the bipartisan resolution which makes clear a United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) that undermines Constitutional freedoms of American gun owners will not be ratified by the Senate – today responded to the vote in the U.N. General Assembly to pass the U.N. ATT. The General Assembly vote was forced as a result of Iran, North Korea and Syria blocking the U.N. ATT last week and infringes on the Administration’s previous insistence on consensus.
“The passage of a treaty that Iran, Syria and North Korea have made clear they have no intention of abiding by will only serve to constrain law-abiding democracies like the United States,” Sen. Moran said. “The U.S. Senate is united in strong opposition to a treaty that puts us on level ground with dictatorships who abuse human rights and arms terrorists, but there is real concern that the Administration feels pressured to sign a treaty that violates our Constitutional rights. Given the apparent support of the Obama Administration for the ATT, members of the U.S. Senate must continue to make clear that any treaty that violates our Second Amendment freedoms will be an absolute nonstarter for ratification.”
It’s our job to make sure any Treaty the U.S. enters doesn’t interfere with our sovereign ability to uphold the rights of Americans,” Sen. Baucus said. The Arms Treaty simply doesn’t include strong enough protections to pass that test, and I won’t support any Treaty that undermines the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Montanans.”
“The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty that passed in the General Assembly today would require the United States to implement gun-control legislation as required by the treaty, which could supersede the laws our elected officials have already put into place,” Sen. Inhofe said. “Recently, 53 Senators went on the record voting in favor of my amendment to stop the State Department from negotiating this treaty. It’s time the Obama Administration recognizes it is already a non-starter, and Americans will not stand for internationalists limiting and infringing upon their Constitutional rights. Furthermore, this treaty could also disrupt diplomatic and national security efforts by preventing our government from assisting allies like Taiwan, South Korea or Israel when they require assistance. I will continue to work with my colleagues Sens. Moran, Baucus and others to ensure the American people’s voices are heard and that this treaty is not ratified.”
“Consensus is needed to ensure that all countries can be held to standards that will actually improve the global situation by denying arms to those who would abuse them and to avoid loopholes in the Treaty that can be exploited by those wishing to export arms irresponsibly,” the U.S. Department of State said in its June 2010 Elements of an Arms Trade Treaty fact sheet.
A crucial mechanism for defending U.S. interests in multilateral negotiations, consensus was previously the basis on which the Administration defended its participation in the Arms Trade Treaty negotiations. This sets a dangerous precedent for failed consensus-based multilateral negotiations in the future.