Last week, the Senate joined the House of Representatives in voting to indefinitely postpone LD 1662, otherwise known as the Bloomberg gun control ballot initiative.
This means Maine voters will be barraged with anti-gun propaganda between now and November by the out-of-state gun control group called Everytown for Gun Safety and the group it funds called Maine Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
Everytown for Gun Safety is a New York City-based group funded by billionaire Michael Bloomberg. Contrary to the name, its focus has nothing to do with gun safety and everything to do with advancing Bloomberg’s failed gun control.
As Maine voters hear and see these ads between now and Election Day — and I am certain everyone will — it’s worth asking why the former mayor of New York City has chosen Maine, the second safest state in the country, as the next battleground for his big city-style gun control scheme.
The answer is simple. He has failed on the federal level and now is targeting the low-hanging fruit, states that can be won through a citizen initiative process for relatively small sums of money (to him), to demonstrate support for his failed agenda.
Bloomberg has been open about his plan to dump $50 million into 15 states, including Maine, to push his gun control agenda on the American people. This referendum is nothing more than an attempt to chip away at our right, as American citizens, to keep and bear arms.
It already is a federal felony to earn your livelihood from gun sales without first obtaining a federal firearm dealer’s license, or FFL. All FFLs are required to run background checks on each and every sale they conduct, whether that be at a gun show, online or through a storefront. It is also already a federal felony that carries significant penalties to knowingly sell, trade, give or lend a firearm to a prohibited person.
In addition to being ineffective, it is also unenforceable without a full gun registration scheme. It is an additional, undetermined tax on legal gun ownership that will have no impact on crime, because, by definition, criminals do not obey the law. It is a fact that the vast majority of firearms used to commit crimes either are straw purchased or acquired on the black market. Passing another law will not change that.
One thing is certain. No matter how you feel about gun ownership, Bloomberg will be dumping funds to fuel his propaganda in Maine over the next few months at unprecedented levels — levels that can’t be matched from the other side.
Krysta Lilly is director of communications at the Maine Heritage Policy Center. An Arundel native, she is a former legislative assistant for the National Rifle Association-Institute for Legislative Action.