Montana voters will decide on Election Day in November if local governments will be allowed to micromanage people’s right to bear arms.
Legislative Referendum 130 asks Montanan voters to remove government’s ability to regulate concealed carry and open carry of firearms, with the exception of public buildings within a local government’s jurisdiction.
The Montana legislature sent this question for voters to decide after Democrat Governor Steve Bullock vetoed a bill last session that featured the same provisions. In the previous case, the same policy would have been accomplished, albeit through traditional legislative means as opposed to a ballot initiative.
At the time of Bullock’s veto, the governor of Montana asserted that the state’s current gun policies safeguard “our basic right to keep and bear arms” and trusted local governments to determine “whether the mentally ill may bring guns into schools, or whether a local government can permit concealed weapons.”
Gun control has been a controversial issue in Montana over the past five years.
In 2016, the city of Missoula passed an ordinance that would have ordered all gun sales taking place within city limits, which included private sales, to be covered under background checks. This is a local version of universal background check policies that have become the norm in various blue states across the nation.
After a number of modifications to the ordinance and legal battles, the Montana Supreme Court ruled that the ordinance was unconstitutional in 2019.
Second Amendment advocates were motivated to push for the aforementioned ballot initiative after this legal drama subsided. For them, Missoula’s ordinance would have potentially led to a situation where the state would have a patchwork of gun control restrictions across the state.
Gary Marbut, president of the Montana Shooting Sports Association, was one of the main activists pushing the ballot initiative forward.
He pointed to the fact that Montana already has a preemption law on the books, which prohibits local governments from regulating guns.
“All local governments are creatures of the state,” Marbut commented. “LR-130 reinforces the restriction in the Montana Constitution on our right to keep and bear arms.”
State Representative Matt Regier sponsored the original bill. He believes that Montanans will greenlight the initiative at the ballot box, due to how it would simplify concealed carry regulations across the state and avoid confusion.
Regier believes that the main purpose of the ballot initiative is to provide uniform regulations across the state for lawful concealed carry permit holders.
“I myself am a concealed carry permit holder, and we want to follow the law,” he said. “If every city and every county has a different ordinance, it would be impossible to even drive across the state,” Regier stated.
Montana is one of the more pro-gun states in the country. Guns & Ammo magazine rewarded Montana a 9th place spot for its 2019 rankings for the most gun-friendly states in the nation.
Flashback: Ann Coulter Warns Steve Bannon about Donald Trump’s Hires During 2016
Coulter tells it like it is.
Earlier this week, former White House adviser Steve Bannon reached out to President Donald Trump, in an apparent move to reconcile with the president. Bannon was one of the more renowned advisors in the Trump administration who received a lot of attention for his unconventional views. The former White House adviser is likely looking for Trump to pardon him for several federal criminal charges that he is currently facing.
Bannon was one of the strongest contrarian voices on the right who questioned traditional conservative dogma on free trade and immigration. His rise to prominence represented a raw, populist anger that was building within the Republican Party base. Bannon ended up leaving the Trump administration after the infamous Charlottesville rally. This left a massive void for populist voices within the Trump brain trust, which was never adequately filled with populist figures.
Most of the strong populist voices during the Trump era came from the outside. Conservative commentator Ann Coulter has been one of the leading figures trying to steer populist discourse in America.Although a harsh critic, Coulter did her best to hold President Trump accountable and watch his every move, especially personnel decisions that did not align with his America first vision. To the average pro-Trump individual, Coulter’s criticism may come off as abrasive, but it was and still is necessary to have a viable nationalist movement.
As a reminder to her followers about how she knew that there were subversive elements in the Trump administration who wanted to gut the president’s America First agenda and pursue more traditional Republican policies, she tweeted about email correspondence she had with Bannon dating back to December 2, 2016. In light of the rapprochement between Bannon and Trump, Coulter called attention to how she warned the former White House adviser about some of the latter’s questionable staffing decisions during the early stages of his presidency.
Coulter tweeted, “No, actually, I knew Trump was betraying us pretty early on – and that it would cost him re-election. My December 2, 2016 email to Steve Bannon:”
No, actually, I knew Trump was betraying us pretty early on – and that it would cost him re-election.
My December 2, 2016 email to Steve Bannon: pic.twitter.com/38hGPNUqqN
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) January 14, 2021
In an email sent on December 2, 2016 with a subject line titled “ghost of christmas future”, Coulter warned then-White House adviser Bannon about some of Trump’s hiring decisions.
She first noted that “the fact that Trump is even CONSIDERING rep. Mccaul (rubio in the house) for homeland — and is NOT considering kobach— tells me we’re not getting any major deportations, no removal of refugees, no e-verify, no end to end anchor babies… and trump will be dead.
also, “mad dog” isn’t going to build a wall.”
She was referring to Texas Congressman Michael McCaul, a known mass migration booster and a potential nominee for the head of the Department of Homeland Security. United States Marine Corps General James Matthis would be Trump’s first Secretary of Defense, who ended up turning out to be a Deep State hack. On the other hand, Kris Kobach is a nationally recognized immigration hawk, who gained fame for implementing some of the stiffest voter ID standards in the nation during his time as Secretary of State.
The Trump administration was successful in implementing several administrative changes that limited immigration and also did not get involved in any nation-building engagements like previous administrations.
Nevertheless, Coulter’s incisive suggestions still have use for future Republican administrations. The new GOP should follow Coulter’s pro-migration restriction suggestions if it wants to not only remain politically relevant, but also protect the integrity of America’s political system.
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