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State Rep John Rubin & HB2199

23 Feb

Kansas State Rep John Rubin is the lead sponsor of HB2199 (The Second Amendment Protection Act).  On Feb 19, 2013 he testified before the Federal & State Affairs Committee.  Below is the testimony he gave. This bill needs to be passed.  Please contact your state reps and state senators to urge passage.

TESTIMONY OF REP. JOHN RUBIN

IN SUPPORT OF HB 2199

 

BEFORE THE HOUSE FEDERAL AND STATE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE

FEBRUARY 19, 2012

 

Chairman Siegfreid and committee members, I appreciate this opportunity to testify today as the lead sponsor and proponent of HB 2199.  I am proud that 49 House colleagues have joined me in sponsoring this vitally important legislation, which proclaims loudly and clearly that not only the Second Amendment but the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution are alive and well in Kansas, and which for the first time puts real teeth into protecting the precious individual right of every Kansan to keep and bear arms under the United States and Kansas Constitutions.

This proposed legislation begins by citing the constitutional rights guaranteed to every Kansan to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment and, under the Ninth and Tenth Amendments,  to retain all powers and rights not specifically granted to the federal government – guarantees that were understood as a precondition to and a matter of contract between the state of Kansas and the federal government at the time Kansas entered the compact to join the Union in 1859.  It also details the individual right guaranteed to every Kansan by Section 4 of the Bill of Rights in the Kansas constitution to keep and bear arms free of government interference.

Predicated upon these clear and unequivocal constitutional guarantees, this bill establishes two circumstances under which the federal government has no enforceable authority to regulate, restrict or ban Kansas firearms, and prohibits any state or federal attempt to do so.

First, it declares that any firearms, firearms accessories or ammunition (terms defined in section 3 of the bill) that are commercially or privately manufactured (defined in section 3) in Kansas, properly stamped “Made in Kansas,”  owned in Kansas, and remaining within the borders of Kansas have clearly not traveled in interstate commerce.  As such, they are not subject to any current or future federal act, law, treaty, executive order, rule or regulation under the authority of Congress to regulate interstate commerce or any other constitutional theory.  (Section 4.)  Thus no state official, employee or agent may enforce  any federal act, law, treaty, executive order, rule or regulation regarding any such Kansas-made firearm, accessory or ammunition. (Section 6(b).)  Moreover, any federal official, agent, employee or contractor who enforces or attempts to enforce any federal act, law, treaty, executive order, rule or regulation upon any such Kansas-made firearm, accessory or ammunition commits a severity level 10 nonperson felony under the Kansas criminal code and is subject to arrest and prosecution for same.  (Section 7.)

Second, this bill declares that any federal act, law, treaty, executive order, rule or regulation that violates the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution is null, void and unenforceable in Kansas with respect to any firearm, accessory or ammunition, regardless of where it was manufactured or from what state it was imported into Kansas. (Section 6(a).)

In addition, this legislation prohibits any health care provider in Kansas from inquiring as to whether a patient has a firearm in his home or on his property, either in conjunction with obtaining the patient’s medical history, or as a condition to providing treatment.  The only exception to this prohibition is in the case of a health care provider treating a patient for a duly diagnosed mental condition.  (Section 9.)

I do suggest several technical “clean-up” amendments to this bill to correct drafting errors on my part.  First, in several sections, the words “owned or manufactured” should be replaced by “manufactured and owned.”   In section 6(b), I recommend deletion of the words “nor any dealer selling any firearm in the state of Kansas,” as firearms dealers do not officially enforce or attempt to enforce federal laws, rules or regulations, but only comply with them.   And the references to “physician” in Section 9 should be replaced by “health care provider,” both because the latter term is defined elsewhere in current law, and to close a loophole in this section that would allow, for example, nurses, but not doctors, still to inquire regarding the presence of firearms in a patient’s home.  I have prepared a balloon amendment with the foregoing corrections for your reference and consideration.

In sum, this bill declares that there is no constitutional basis for the federal government to regulate, restrict or ban Kansas-made and owned firearms, accessories or ammunition, both because this is not a specifically enumerated power of the United States, and because such firearms, accessories and ammunition are not in interstate commerce.  Moreover, any federal firearms law, order, rule or regulation that violates the United States Constitution is null, void and unenforceable in Kansas, regardless of where the firearms were manufactured or from where they are imported into Kansas.  The simple response to those who proclaim the federal government’s right to regulate, restrict or ban such firearms under the Constitution’s supremacy clause, there is a simple answer:  the supremacy clause does not apply to federal laws, rules, regulations or orders that are unconstitutional.  Accordingly, any attempt by state officials to enforce any such federal laws, rules, regulations or orders is prohibited, and any attempt by any federal official to do so subjects him to arrest and prosecution in Kansas.

Committee members, I ask you to stand with me and 49 of your colleagues in preserving, protecting and defending every Kansan’s individual right under the Second and Tenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and Section 4 of the Kansas Bill of Rights to keep and bear arms.  I ask you to report HB 2199 favorably for passage.

Thank you, and I would be pleased to stand for questions.

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