Earlier this week, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), son of former Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), slammed over the measures President Barack Obama planned to take in what the White House claimed was an effort to curb violence.
During the interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, Sen. Paul explained, “I’m against having a king,” adding that a president who creates law by executive fiat is runs counter to the government formed by the Founding Fathers. “I think having a monarch is what we fought the American Revolution over and someone who wants to bypass the Constitution, bypass Congress — that’s someone who wants to act like a king or a monarch.”
Sen. Paul warned that the White House would have a fight on his hands if he signed any executive orders that bypassed Congress. On Thursday, the day after President Obama’s press conference where he announced that he would sign 23 executive orders dealing with guns, Sen. Paul announced that he would introduce legislation to protect the Second Amendment from executive fiat:
As published by Talking Points Memo, here are his intentions in what he calls the “Separation of Powers Restoration and Second Amendment Protection Act.”
Paul says his legislation will declare that “Any executive order by President Obama infringing on the Second Amendment rights of all Americans would be declared null and void” and “would prohibit federal funds to implement President Obama’s executive orders impacting the 2nd Amendment.”
The prospective bill would also allow congressmen, state and local governments, and private persons to sue over such executive orders.
During an interview last night, Sen. Paul told Sean Hannity that he didn’t think President Obama’s legislative package, which would ban so-called “assault weapons” and limit magazine sizes to 10 rounds, would pass Congress. Noting the push for gun control was bad politics, Sen. Paul explained, “I think there are a few Democrats that will worry about going home to West Virginia or other states like that and voting for a ban on guns.”
While the White House is pushing the issue at full force, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) is, as explained yesterday, concerned about the electoral angle in 2014. Senate Democratic aides recently told the Washington Post that Reid is worried that President Obama’s push for gun control “could be a significant factor in at least 10 of the 23 Democratic Senate seats up for grabs.” Gun control played a role in the 1994 mid-term election, helping Republicans gain control of Congress for the first time in 40 years.
Sen. Paul isn’t just putting pressure on potentially vulnerable Senate Democrats by introducing legislation to curb Obama’s power grab, he is also positioning himself well for 2016 by standing strong on an issue important to the Republican base. It’s smart politics.