John Klar: Vermont Legislature tries an end-run around the Second Amendment

By John Klar

Vermont has embarked on a flagrant effort to trample on rights that the Second Amendment says “shall not be infringed.” But this time, the lawyerly legislators sworn to protect and defend the Constitution have been caught red-handed.

Histrionic progressive Vermont legislators have tried to institute a blatantly unconstitutional farce by couching their evil effort in a domestic violence bill: H.610. Purportedly trying to close the so-called “Charleston loophole,” this scam seeks to enact a 30-day waiting period for firearms purchases at the state level in place of the three-day federal “default proceed” process, which is current federal law. Further, if a potential gun-purchaser does not receive a background check clearance from the federal NCIS system after that 30 days, not only can’t they proceed to purchase a weapon — under H.610, they have no right of appeal whatsoever.

John Klar

Imagine a legislature imposing a 30-day “waiting period” on a woman obtaining an abortion — and if there is no approval, she must proceed to delivery. But the “right” to have an abortion is an “implied” right, whereas the right to bear arms could not be more explicit — it is the right that guarantees all others. The United States Supreme Court has specifically ruled that this right is “deeply rooted in this nation’s history and traditions” (Heller v. DC) and that this right must be equally protected against state governments under the Fourteenth Amendment (McDonald v. Chicago).

It is bizarre that those who claim that Donald Trump is a tyrant seek to dispose of citizens’ core ability to oppose tyranny. One would think liberal awareness of the plights of the Uighur in China or Rohingya in Myanmar would lead them to clamor for more guns to secure our nation against dreaded tyrants, but instead they conspire to eradicate self-defense utterly.

The two sponsors of Vermont’s H.610 (both attorneys) sit on the House Committee on the Judiciary. Vermont’s Office of Legislative Council, and its attorney general, have both fully endorsed this draconian law, despite clear complaints that it grossly infringes on both the Second Amendment and the Due Process Clause, as well as Article 16 of the Vermont Constitution. All four of these attorneys are paid with taxpayer funds to defend the Constitution: they are instead dismantling them.

But Vermont is (as so often) a special case. Recent emails were released that revealed something even more insulting and indefensible: H.610 is being drafted by a special-interest social worker named Sarah Robinson!

In these emails, Attorney Erik Fitzpatrick of the Office of Legislative Counsel (which shamelessly calls itself “nonpartisan”) writes to Sarah Robinson and Maxine Grad, Committee Chair:

Attached is the revised draft of H.610, incorporating the recommended changes Sarah sent after the meeting last week.

Sarah, can you please read the blue highlighted changes closely to make sure I have integrated them correctly? I did a bit of editing and rewriting for clarity and organization, but did not intend to change anything substantively. Thanks for your help and let me know what you think.

Fitzpatrick’s fawning consideration is for Sara Robinson, deputy director of Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, a special-interest “nonprofit” that represents 15 consolidated nonprofit special interest groups.

An hour later, Maxine Grad responded: “Thanks. Erik once Sarah ok’s it, it can get sent out and posted. M”

And posted it was.

The purpose of the “default proceed” component of federal law is to guarantee that government does not unilaterally, and without legal cause (e.g., a felony conviction), deprive someone of acquiring a firearm — including a woman in fear for her life at the hands of an enraged domestic partner or other criminal. The purpose of H.610, written by a special-interest social worker and implemented by Constitution-negating legislators and attorneys, is to interpose exactly such an unconstitutional hurdle.

Vermonters have been grossly deceived by those sworn to protect them. The question is, will anything be done about it?

John Klar is an attorney and farmer residing in Brookfield, and former pastor of the First Congregational Church of Westfield. He is running for governor in 2020.

Image courtesy of Public domain

28 thoughts on “John Klar: Vermont Legislature tries an end-run around the Second Amendment

  1. Gun control freaks beware!!! The Supreme Court can’t wait to rule on any and all gun legislation these clowns are considering.

  2. Insofar as reasonable freedom lets you do whatever you want as long as you’re not doing it to someone else or at someone else’s expense, it seems reasonable that any law requiring those who oppose gun ownership to own guns, while possibly not unconstitutional, is an unreasonable infringement on their freedom as long as circumstances do not demand it (i.e. repelling an alien invasion – a point brought up by Admiral Yamamoto). Likewise, it seems reasonable that those who have not been convicted of lawbreaking or are not in the process of committing a violation of the law should not be restricted from owning firearms. I fail to see why those in opposition to ownership consider my ownership of a gun unjustly to infringe upon their freedom. Biden recently brought up (I don’t speak for his accuracy – especially given that it’s Biden) the claim that “forty percent of guns were purchased without a background check.” Since, as I remind the reader, guns have been purchased since the founding of the nation and background checks have only existed since the seventies, Biden’s numbers are probably an underestimation. Crime statistics do not correspond to gun purchases; indeed, crime has gone down and purchases have gone up.

  3. Unfortunately Vermonters are sheep. That’s why taxes are so high, too much government control, and nobody will stand up to them. So happy to be an ex Vermonter.

  4. Where is the 30 day state hold mentioned in H.610? As an active FFL, many of my clients are put on a 3 day “review”. Incomplete NICs records, inaccurate NICs records, false NICs records and other types of erroneous or incomplete information trigger a review so it is a NICS issue with their records and inaccurate or incomplete submissions of records by contributing LE and other enforcement agencies.
    There is no “loophole” just incompetent administration of NICs and incomplete records.

  5. Blah, Blah, Blah ! The same old same old. Vote them out, but you can’t. The only way to beat them is to use the same tactics that they use. Find out where they live picket and protest outside of their homes. Especially those who take Bloomberg money to deprive of our rights. It is time to take them out of their smug comfort zone. I am not advocating any violence towards them but they should not be allowed to violate our rights and then ignore us without having to hear from us except at their trumped up hearings where the allow you to have five minutes to speak to people that are not listening. Are you listening Gun Owners of Vermont ?
    Where are the all the pro 2nd Amendment lawyers in this state ( there must be some ) to bring charges if perjury for violating there oath. Where is the NRA filing suits on our behalf. Where are the Vermont sheriffs that will tell them they will not enforce their unconstitutional laws, like in Virginia. You can’t play by their rules when they make the rules. Our rules are clear they are enumerated in the U.S. Constitution.


    • “Where is the NRA filing suits on our behalf.”

      Negotiating Rights Away has problems of it’s own creation at the moment, even if they didn’t I would look more towards SAF,FPC when it comes to filing suit’s on behalf of the 2 nd. , than the NRA.

  6. Saw a add at digger “half of youth smoke menthol , eliminate flavored tabacco” or like that.

    any who I’ve got one for the gun grabbers

    more then half of so called legislators for VT’ers hate citizens ability to protect themselves,
    Eliminate all gun haters and hate funders..

  7. With Town Meeting Day coming up, check your town’s social service appropriations warned in the Town Report. If they include any of the ‘non-profits’ listed in this article, stand up and make a motion to amend the proposed amount to zero. It can be done – bring along copies of their IRS 990’s to justify the move.

    Hit these groups in the pocketbook and don’t let your tax dollars support them while they systematically remove our ‘natural, inherent and inalienable’ rights.

  8. It would be more effective and longer lasting to “storm the Capital” with Republican candidates armed with fortitude, conviction and a thorough knowledge of both the US and the Vermont constitutions. The battle is at the ballot box and it is past time for the GOP to actively cultivate the next generation of conservatives and more of them. It really is that simple, and safer.

    • At the time the state house was constructed ,taking out the trash was a tar and feathering and a ride out on a rail in the public squar,that actually sounds too good for these lawless violaters.

  9. Guns, the conflict: Given several decades of gun legislation/regulation and the apparent intent of our constitution, the question is, can we and our neighbors sufficiently armed ourselves to over throw the government? If not, what are we to make of these “seekers-of-safety-from-shooters” eroding this more fundamental protection? I feel a parable coming on — the ski resort folks look at all the dirty snow in the parking lots…solution, snow’s the problem…lets get rid of the snow.

  10. As I have said many times before, in the Petri dish of The Vermont Universal Socialists, trammeling on it’s citizens constitutional rights is the main ingredient of its annual legislative soup. It is evident in the state takeover of local education, the expansion of Act 250 to an unheard of structure never intended, and, not the least, trying to bankrupt the state in the name of mitigating global climate change, among many other socialist initiatives to numerous to mention.

  11. While the Constitution of the United States works for the other 49 states, apparently the Republic of Vermont choses to dance to it’s own tune regardless of how unpleasant the musiic.

  12. Mr. klar, As an attorney can you tell us who is responsible for charging these legislators with the violation of their oath of office under the “pains and penalties of perjury”? They swear then sign the oath then violate the constitution. They have no fear of retribution so it continues. The public appears to be too ignorant to understand or care that these people have sworn to protect and defend our rights but have instead prostituted themselves for an ideology that ignores our basic law, the Constitution. What good is the oath if it has no teeth?

    • Who polices the lawless lawmakers. Each and everyone and including Mr.governor who has voted ,or failed to veto,to promulgate these violations of the Constitutions.
      These violators need to be prosecuted,removed from office and jailed.

      These very examples of the lawlessness out of Montpelier is the reason the founders wrote the 2 nd amendment.

    • Here is the source of the problem:

      Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U.S. 533 (1964), was a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court ruled that the electoral districts of state legislative chambers must be roughly equal in population. Along with Baker v. Carr (1962) and Wesberry v. Sanders (1964), it was part of a series of Warren Court cases that applied the principle of “one person, one vote” to U.S. legislative bodies.

      This was an unfair ruling in my opinion. The population of eaxh state is represented by the House of Representitives. The Senate is supposed to represent the state as a whole and should have equal political weight in each county by electing 2 senators from each county. Nothing will change in Vermont as long as Chittendon and Washington counties control 1/3 of the senate liberal vote. This is an important factor in what has happened in all states. Liberal populated cities controls the senate in each liberal run city in the country.

      • Stating again (see below)
        I’ve been saying this for over a year now. Sen Benning proposed a bill to have 3 Senators form each county. I wanted two as per the US.
        Noted in TNR article:
        VT-New bills address guns, smoking age, background checks for homeschoolers and more
        J Benning’s bill:
        S.11 limits senatorial districts to a maximum of three members, beginning 2022 General Election. Sens. Ashe, Benning, Sirotkin.(Chittenden County now has six seats.

        • With all due respect Tom, I’m sure those bills are dead in the water. The current senate is not going to vote on any bills that will reduce the power of the liberal ideology ruining Vermont. The citizens have been allowed no teeth other than the voting booth which has also been finagled to support liberals, IE allowing students from other states to vote.

  13. It’s no hidden secret the anti-gun agenda of Liberals in Montpelier and for anyone who has
    sat through a committee hearing with ” Smug ” Maxine Grad, can see it Front & Center, a
    pretty shameful display ……..The ” Holier Than Thou ” Liberals……………….

    I would hope we can find a way to hold legislators that try to circumvent the Constitution and
    their “oath of office ” for and agenda.

    Hold there feet to the fire, vote them out !!

    • Hard to vote them out when Chittenden County controls who wins and who loses elections! Vermont needs an electoral college now!

    • Hard to vote them out when Chittenden County voters have a lock on who gets in office and who does not get in office. Vermont needs term limits and an state electoral college…NOW!

      • Michael, I wrote this in another gun control article: Rural areas all over the country are not being represented due to the urban populated cities that are more liberal. It’s called taxation without representation. This was caused by a Warren Supreme court decision from the sixties. This needs to be addressed again by the court. The warren court was a liberal court. The decision to base the state senate on population duplicates the house of representatives and is not fair. The senate was meant to be the deliberative body originally designed to put controls on the house of representatives. The Supreme court decision changed the makeup of the senate and is now a rubber stamp for political means. A class action law suit by rural counties may have a chance of returning to the original intent of the senate which should be 2 senators from each county to represent all of the state not just the cities. As it stands now Chittendon and Washington Counties control the liberal 1/3 vote in the senate with 9 senators out of the total of 30. Counties have to be joined together and represented by one senator to meet the population requirement. This is a farce and a political tool for the left. We need to find an attorney to challenge the 60’s Supreme Court ruling.

        I’m not an attorney but their must be one out there who can start the ball rolling. Even Tim Ashe, Senate leader talked at one point about this problem, not that I trust him on anything. Sportsman’s groups may also support this. We win nothing until the liberal power structure of the legislature is more fair to rural voters.

        • Another thought would be a petition movement in the rural counties. They are also sick and tired of the idiotic mandates coming from the City of Oz (Montpeculier) which is controlled by carpetbaggers, Social Justice warriors and the totalitarian progressives. Take Back Vermont!

        • I’ve been saying this for over a year now. Sen Benning proposed a bill to have 3 Senators form each county. I wanted two as per the US.

          Noted in TNR article:
          VT-New bills address guns, smoking age, background checks for homeschoolers and more

          J Benning’s bill:
          S.11 limits senatorial districts to a maximum of three members, beginning 2022 General Election. Sens. Ashe, Benning, Sirotkin.(Chittenden County now has six seats.

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