Home > newsroom > Page
Ranking Member Hastings’ Floor Speech on Restoring Americans’ Second Amendment Rights


WASHINGTON, D.C., May 20, 2009 - House Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Doc Hastings (WA-04) spoke on the House floor today urging Members to restore Americans’ Second Amendment rights on federal lands. Full video and text of the speech, as prepared for delivery, follows:


Click here to watch the floor speech

“Mr. Speaker, since January, House Republicans have simply asked the Democrat Majority for a chance to debate this amendment and vote to allow citizens to carry firearms in national parks and wildlife refuges in accordance with State law.

Unfortunately, Democrat Leaders have spent the past five months using every legislative trick in the book to obstruct a fair and open process.

However, after Senator Coburn managed to force consideration of his amendment on this issue – Democrat Leaders have finally cried uncle and decided to hold a debate and a vote. I applaud their capitulation.

During today’s debate, you’ll hear gun control advocates falsely claim that this amendment will increase poaching because America’s gun owners won’t be able to resist the temptation to shoot the wildlife encountered in National Parks.

Their liberal base might believe this – but the American people won’t buy it.

The fact is American gun owners are simply citizens who want to exercise their Second Amendment rights without running into confusing red-tape.

Opponents of this amendment will also call it unprecedented, far-reaching, and radical – but the fact is that it merely puts National Parks and Refuges in line with the current regulations of National Forest and Bureau of Land Management. Let me reiterate, this is already the law of the land on National Forest and Bureau of Land Management property.

The current policy is outdated, unnecessary, inconsistent, and confusing to those who visit the checkerboard of public lands – and the policy needs to be changed this amendment does just that.

Finally, let me remind my colleagues that the current prohibition is only in place because a lone activist Federal judge in Washington, D.C. somehow rationalized that the Second Amendment should be subject to environmental review and red-tape bureaucracy – and decided to singlehandedly throw out the previous policy. And she did this despite the fact that the previous Administration had conducted months of review and a thorough public comment process.

Now, today, on this vote, the House has an opportunity to right this wrong.

I encourage my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me in restoring Americans’ Second Amendment rights on federal lands.”

# # #

Print version of this document


Contact: Emily Lawrimore or Jill Strait (202) 226-2311

Latest News

Bishop: President Ignores Legislative Process in Another Round of Unilateral Monument Designations

Today, President Obama unilaterally designated three new national monuments in the California desert: Sand to Snow National Monument, Mojave Trails National Monument, and Castle Mountains National Mon...... Read more

Investigative Report on EPA’s Gold King Mine Blowout Released by House Committee on Natural Resources Majority Staff

Today, the House Committee on Natural Resources released a Majority staff report detailing information uncovered during the Committee’s ongoing investigation of the EPA’s Gold King Mine blowout near S...... Read more

Bishop: President Obama’s Unilateral Anti-Energy Agenda Will Ultimately be Gutted by the Courts

Yesterday, the Supreme Court stayed the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan in a 5-4 decision. Chairman Bishop (R-UT) issued the following statement: “Much of the President’s unilateral agenda, in...... Read more

View All News

Calendar

The 2016 California Water Supply Outlook During the El Niño and Three Years of Restricted Water Deliveries
Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans | 1324 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
The President’s Imposition of New Environmental Mitigation Regulations
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations | 1334 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
The U.S. Department of Treasury's Analysis of the Situation in Puerto Rico
Full Committee | 1324 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
View All Events