NDP MPs cave in to Liberal threats and partisan politics

NDP betrayal on firearms Bill C-391 vote

With the notable exception of MPs Peter Stoffer, John Rafferty and Bruce

Hyer, NDP members who previously supported Bill C-391 and scrapping the

long gun registry, will ignore the views of their constituents, the outdoor

community, hunters, farmers, recreational and Olympic shooters and

thousands of front line police officers across Canada, and back a Liberal

motion to kill the bill.

“The complete abdication of responsibility by these NDP Members of

Parliament, who were elected to represent their constituents is

disappointing but not unexpected,” said Greg Farrant, Manager of Government

Affairs and Policy, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters. “Threats by

the Liberal opposition; intimidation by the NDP leader and caucus

colleagues; misinformation by anti-gun lobbyists; and a propaganda campaign

under the guise of ‘public information’ by the Canadian Association of

Chiefs of Police (CACP) appear to have done the job.

“These MPs have abandoned their principles, betrayed their constituents;

ignored the overwhelming results of eighteen national and regional public

opinion polls in favor of scrapping the long gun registry; placed their

faith in half-baked ‘compromises’ that are neither workable or

constitutional; overlooked the fact that the long gun registry has neither

saved lives nor enhanced public safety; and supported the continued waste

of taxpayers’ dollars on a badly flawed system that places front line

officers in jeopardy if they rely on the information it contains.”

Ontario NDP MPs Carol Hughes, Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing; Claude

Gravelle, Nickel Belt; Glenn Thibeault, Sudbury; Charlie Angus,

Timmins-James Bay; and Malcolm Allen, Welland each supported Bill C-391 on

Second Reading. In fact, some went so far as to indicate that they intended

to keep doing so until the bill was passed.

“I was happy to cast a vote in support of C-391 on behalf of the people of

Nickel Belt, and I am pleased that this bill is moving forward to

committee… I will continue to support this bill through the rest of the

legislative process, and I look forward to casting a final vote to abolish

the Long Gun Registry when it comes back to the House.” Claude Gravelle,

November 2009

“I’ve got to go with what the people who brought me here (to Parliament),

what they say. I’m the MP for Sudbury and my constituents are telling me

that’s what they’d like.” Glenn Thibeault, December 2009

Thibeault has said he received more than 500 phone calls and e-mails in

favor of eliminating the long gun registry. He received roughly 50

responses from constituents who wanted to keep the registry.

“Jack Layton stated he would allow his caucus to vote their conscience on

this issue. If that’s the case, why the bullying and intimidation of NDP

members by their caucus colleague MP Joe Comartin, Windsor-Tecumseh to

switch their vote,” Farrant asked.

“The Liberals claim that the RCMP report is proof that the registry works.

If they’re so convinced of that, then why have two previous Liberal reviews

of the long gun registry never been released and remain protected by

Cabinet confidentiality? Former Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin said the

registry was badly flawed, and promised the outdoor community that he would

fix it. He even appointed a Minister to review the registry and make

recommendations, which were dismissed in Cabinet and buried out of sight.

“The hypocrisy on the part of both the NDP and Liberals in this debate is

staggering. Liberal and NDP members who voted in support of Bill C-391 and

have now flip flopped, have abandoned their principles and thrown their

constituents under the bus in the name of political expediency.”

Facts:

* The Auditor General of Canada reported in 2002 and 2006 that the

Canadian Firearms Centre was unable or unwilling to demonstrate how the

long gun registry had enhanced public safety or saved lives.

* Crimes using long guns have been declining since the early 1970’s

long before the registry ever existed.

* The rate of firearms related death declined from the mid 1970’s to

2002 but has increased by 24% since the introduction of the long gun

registry, largely due to the increased use of illegal firearms smuggled

into Canada to commit crime.

* The female spousal murder rate fell by more than 50% between 1979

and 2000, the year before the long gun registry began.

* Between 1995 and 2008 the use of knives were used more often to kill

women than firearms.

* The firearms used by abusive spouses are almost all possessed

illegally, something that the registry has no effect on.

* Over 400,000 are prohibited by court order from possessing firearms,

including 36,000 with restraining orders, but are not tracked by police.

* Instead of tracking legal firearms owners, Police in Baltimore, New

York City, New Jersey and Virginia have instituted prohibited offenders

registries targeting those prohibited from possessing firearms because of

criminal activity – crime rates due to firearms violence have decreased

dramatically in these cases.

* The Coalition for Gun Control says the long gun registry has saved

lives, but offers no fact-based evidence to support that contention.

* A recent RCMP report indicated that police are divided on the

registry.

* The report contained the admission that the registry contains

inconsistent and contradictory data.

* The report noted that the long gun registry costs $23 million

annually to operate, not the $4 million claimed by the CACP.

* The report stated that the registry has an error rate of 1 – 2% =

70,000 to 140,000 inaccurate entries in the database.

* Police associations in Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Calgary and Edmonton

have supported scrapping the registry, as has the Saskatchewan Federation

of Police Officers.

* There is only a 30 – 50% compliance rate after 15 years.

* The Department of Justice found that 84% of firearms used in the

commission of crimes were unregistered, and overall 74.9% were illegal guns

smuggled into Canada.

* A new report in the Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice

found that about 2/3 of the firearms seized in Canada were smuggled in from

the U.S.

* Illegal handguns are responsible for 92% of gun crime in Canada,

despite the existence of a handgun registry since 1934.

* The CACP claims that Chiefs attending the recent CACP meeting in

Edmonton unanimously supported the registry when in fact, the report they

were asked to endorse contained not one mention of the long gun registry.

* The CACP claims that police use the registry 11,500 times a day –

Figures on the Canadian Firearms Centre website indicate that the real

number is actually less than 20 times.

* Ottawa Police Chief Vern White disagrees with the CACP, adding that

most hits to the registry are automatically generated and not an actual

check of the system.

* Calgary Police Chief Rick Hansen thinks the registry is flawed and

fails to tackle the real issues of gun violence.

* Abbotsford B.C. Police Chief Bob Rich believes we are having the

wrong debate and the gun registry misses the real gun crimes plaguing the

community – 90% of firearms used in crime in his jurisdiction were

smuggled in from Washington State – the number of smuggled firearms used

to commit crime in Toronto is 70%.

With over 100,000 members, subscribers and supporters, and 670 member

clubs, the O.F.A.H. is the largest nonprofit fishing, hunting and

conservation-based organization in Ontario, and the voice of anglers and

hunters.

For more information, visit www.ofah.org.

About Peter Wood 1194 Articles
As an avid lifelong angler and hunter, Peter’s outdoor knowledge and experiences keep expanding through his hundreds of hours of hunting and fishing podcast interviews with like minded experts. He has received numerous national writing awards. With thousands of outdoor pictures on Ripple Outdoors and many full-length articles with outdoor magazine and video clips you might say that he not only enjoys his outdoor lifestyle, but he’s quite the fanatic! In 2015 he earned fifth overall on the King of the Wood Contest hosted by Canada In The Rough team, pretty good for a baby boomer deer hunter. His buck was also one of the top bucks taken that season. Through Peter’s deer hunting seminars or by attending outdoor trade shows, like the Toronto Sportsmen Show and The SWOC Big Buck Show, he has connected with thousands of like minded people that love hunting and fishing. As a volunteer or member of local and national outdoor groups like QDMA, SWOC, Outdoor Writers of Canada, Archery Trade Show Association he continues to learn and hone his craft. Read his many articles, listen to his podcasts and rifle through thousands of photos on Ripple Outdoors. Discover Peter’s latest posts about outdoor gear, destinations, how to articles and interviews and you’ll be a better angler and hunter for the experience.

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