Yael T. Abouhalkah

NRA leaves treadmarks over spineless GOP in Missouri

Looking like lapdogs of the National Rifle Association, the Republican-run Missouri Senate

meekly bowed to the group’s wishes

in reviving an unconstitutional gun bill Monday night.

The measure seeks to nullify federal gun laws, and would allow Missouri law enforcement authorities to arrest and put in jail federal law enforcement officials.

That’s on its face silly and unconstitutional as courts have rules previously on similar legislation. But what’s even more inane is the vision of a bunch of taxpayer-supported politicians running around and making pro-gun legislation one of the first things they handle in the 2014 session, not something having to do with the real priorities of the state. You know, like jobs.

On Monday, GOP senators tried to put the best face on their act of spinelessness in face of NRA opposition to one aspect of the gun bill.

Last week the Senate approved a measure that included an amendment from Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, a St. Louis Democrat, which would have required owners to report stolen guns to authorities.

The NRA hit the roof and sent out a (ridiculous) message that the amendment amounted to a gun registry — which it opposes — and the amendment had to go or GOP senators would be graded badly by the pro-gun group.

Oh, no, anything but that


In what turned out to be nothing more than a publicity stunt, Sen. Brian Nieves appeared at a press conference and decried the NRA’s opposition late last week, saying the organization didn’t understand what was really in the bill.

But on Monday, Nieves was right there with other NRA lackeys on the Senate, stripping Nasheed’s amendment from the bill on a 22-9 party-line vote.

After pointing out the fact that Nieves had let the NRA “punk” him, Nasheed’s quote during debate hit the mark: “Now, because you have one special interest group that has decided to oppose this amendment, everyone decides to run.”

Nieves tried to save face with a few choice marks of his own about the NRA, implying it had lied about the bill and that his opinion of the NRA “has been damaged tremendously in this process.”

But it turns out his opinion had not been damaged enough to actually send a message to the NRA, that it can’t try to mislead a state senator — not to mention millions of Missourians — about legislation before the General Assembly.

No, Nieves and other GOP senators let the NRA roll all over them, leaving its treadmarks behind.