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article imageGroup of Senators: UN Treaty infringes on gun rights

By Mike White     Oct 16, 2013 in Politics
A bipartisan group of United States Senators is opposing the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty, because they believe it will infringe on the Second Amendment rights of citizens to bear arms. The opposition by 50 senators may mean the treaty might be rejected.
Reuters reported that Secretary of State John Kerry has already signed the treaty, which the news agency says is only related to cross-border trade. Reportedly it is designed to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals and those who abuse human rights.
The U. N. treaty must be ratified by the 100 member United States Senate by a two-thirds majority, however. It has been attacked by the National Rifle Association (NRA), an influential gun-rights group.
On the other hand, while the article claims the treaty relates only to cross border trade, those who oppose it say it undermines American sovereignty. They also claim the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution is disregarded. The Amendment guarantees citizens the right to bear arms.
The United States became the 91st country to ratify the treaty. America is the leading exporter of guns in the world.
Kerry claimed the treaty would have little impact on American gun manufacturers, because the country already has strict export controls as far as the kind of weapons that the treaty includes.
"This treaty will not diminish anyone's freedom, in fact the treaty recognizes the freedom of both individuals and states to obtain, possess and use arms for legitimate purposes," Kerry commented after he signed the treaty.
The group of Republican and Democratic Senators is not buying it, however. Today United States Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), Senator Jim Moran (R- Kansas) and Joe Manchin (Democrat West Virginia ) led a bipartisan group of 50 senators who wrote to President Obama to repeat that the Senate overwhelmingly opposes the ratification of the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The letter also stated the senate will not be bound by its obligations.
Senator Inhofe's website stated that the Administration's approval of the treaty "was a direct dismissal of the bipartisan Senate majority that rejects this treaty “Throughout this process, it has been disturbing to watch the Administration reverse U.S. policies, abandon its own ‘red line’ negotiation principles, admit publicly the treaty’s dangerous ambiguity, and hastily review the final treaty text. Today I join my colleagues in upholding the fundamental individual rights of Americans by reiterating our rejection of the ATT. The Senate will overwhelmingly oppose ratification, and refuse to uphold the treaty’s object and purpose.”
The letter also noted that in March 53 senators voted to block involvement by the United States in the treaty. It said that when the Administration proceeded to sign the treaty, it misled the United Nations. The letter also said that instead of focusing on the treaty, the president should focus on serious national security and economic issues.
“Under no circumstances should this country surrender our gun rights to the control of the United Nations,” Senator Manchin said in the letter. He added that America can, however, work toward improving the regulation of the trade of weapons internationally. claimed that because of the number of senators opposing the issue, the treaty will not be ratified by the senate. It called it "dead in the water."
More about bipartisan group, Senators, Opposing, UN Arms Trade Treaty, 50
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