Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced he would not include Sen. Dianne Feinstein's so-called "assault weapons" ban in the gun legislation he plans to introduce on the Senate floor, but gun-rights advocates warn this is actually Reid's way of making the ban easier to pass.
"It's a trap! It's a non-event. What's going to happen is they're going to take another bill, and that could be the veterans' gun ban and then bring that to the floor," said Mike Hammond, chief counsel for Gun Owners of America, a pro-Second Amendment group.
Hammond said bringing a less controversial bill to the floor will make it easier to find the 60 votes needed to open debate.
Hammond said Feinstein's proposed ban on "assault weapons" will be offered as an amendment to Reid's bill.
"Furthermore, they'll probably break off a magazine ban and offer that as an amendment to that. Furthermore, they'll probably take a universal gun registry and offer that as an amendment to that," Hammond told WND.
"When Harry Reid says he's dropping Feinstein from the bill, what he means is it's not going to be in the bill which is reported to the Senate, but it will be offered on the Senate floor," he said. "So the question we're asking is, 'Why in heaven's name should anyone vote for this underlying vehicle when we're being told in advance it's going to be nothing but a vehicle for a gun-control buffet?'"
Hammond said Reid has two options in bringing his legislation forward. He can require 60 votes to begin debate and control the amendment process. Or, he can require 50 but be forced to allow Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell the first amendment to the bill.
"The exercise is to trick us to voting for that motion to proceed by starting out with what he views as a noncontroversial bill," said Hammond, who said he is urging all members to resist the strategy to push forward a "gun control-o-rama" of amendments.
"Our message is to vote against the motion to proceed. We don't want any gun control to come up at all," said Hammond.
Amendments to the bill would require a simple majority, although closing the debate would require 60 votes. Hammond is encouraged by that hurdle, because he thinks the Feinstein assault-weapons ban has fewer than 40 supporters. But that's not the end of the story. He said the political bargaining that piled up 60 votes for Obamacare will be on full display again.
"Do you remember Obamacare, in which Harry Reid just pushed and pushed and pushed and said, Who do I have to buy off with this bribe or that bribe? That's what they envision for the floor consideration of this bill. And they will try to tweak and bribe and buy off as much gun control as they can manage," Hammond said.