A group behind a ballot initiative that Nevada voters approved last year expanding gun background checks to unlicensed dealers is suing the governor and attorney general to try to make them enforce it.
The measure mandating FBI background checks on private-party gun sales passed by less than 1 percentage point in November after Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval vetoed a similar measure in 2013.
Attorney General Adam Laxalt has maintained that the new law can’t be enforced after the FBI informed the state in December it wants Nevada’s Department of Public Safety to conduct the checks itself in the same way it has done for commercial gun sales by licensed dealers since 1998.
Laxalt’s office issued a new legal opinion on Thursday that says the state can ask for the FBI’s cooperation to finding a solution, but he warned that any changes in the state’s existing system could result in further complications.
Nevadans for Background Checks filed the new lawsuit Thursday in Clark County District Court. They argue the ballot measure effectively changed the state system to dictate that the FBI perform the background checks.
“Regrettably, due to Governor Sandoval’s refusal to act and a flawed and incomplete opinion from the Attorney General, the Background Check Act has not been enforced and remains in limbo, contravening the will of the people of the Nevada who exercised their constitutional right to change the law to promote public safety and protect the communities of this state,” the lawsuit said.
Groups were pushing for the law’s implementation months before a gunman opened fire in Las Vegas on Oct. 1, killing 58 and wounding more than 500 in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
They say that even though the gun background check law may not have been able to prevent the shooter from obtaining his guns, it would help keep firearms out of the hands of those who are suicidal or a threat to others.
“Last week was a terrifying wake-up call about why strong gun laws matter and parents like me won’t sit idly by as our leaders refuse to do their jobs,” said Elizabeth Becker, a volunteer with the Nevada chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
“Our governor and attorney general now face a clear choice: Will they keep dragging their feet on enforcing the law voters passed last year, or will they start working with the FBI to implement it?” she said in a statement Friday.
Sandoval said when he vetoed a similar measure in 2013 that it eroded Second Amendment rights. His press secretary, Mari St. Martin, said Thursday the governor intends to review the new opinion from the attorney general.
John Bolton Ordered Staff to Report Trump and Guiliani Because of Illegal Ukrainian “Drug Deal.”
The New York Times is reporting that, responding to the Ukraine scandal, Trump aide John Bolton warned “Giuliani’s a hand grenade who’s going to blow everyone up.”
Seems he was fired because he would have no part of President Donald Trump’s off-the-books shadow government Ukraine extortion scandal. Bolton also apparently implicated both the president’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, and the president’s acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvany.
“I am not part of whatever drug deal Rudy and Mulvaney are cooking up,” Bolton told senior director for Russian and Eurasian affairs Fiona Hill to tell White House lawyers, The New York Times reports in a bombshell article late Monday night.
Bolton, who resigned from the Trump administration hours before President Trump tweeted he had fired him, instructed Hill “to notify the chief lawyer for the National Security Council that Mr. Giuliani was working with Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff, on a rogue operation with legal implications,” Hill told House of Representatives investigators on Monday.
EMERGENCY: Turkey Holding US Nukes Hostage
The military situation near the Turkish border in Syria remains in flux, with allegiances shifting quickly amid uncertainty of how everything will shake out. But the fast-moving developments also have drawn attention to a lesser-known fact of US foreign policy:
The Pentagon has about 50 tactical nuclear weapons stored in Turkey at its Incirlik Air Base, reports Business Insider. The big question: Is it still safe to keep them there now that US-Turkey relations are fraying? Related coverage:
- Under review: Officials in the State and Energy departments have begun “quietly reviewing” plans to evacuate the weapons, reports the New York Times. “Those weapons, one senior official said, were now essentially Erdogan’s hostages,” writes David Sanger. “To fly them out of Incirlik would be to mark the de facto end of the Turkish-American alliance. To keep them there, though, is to perpetuate a nuclear vulnerability that should have been eliminated years ago.
- In vaults: The bombs have been stored in underground vaults at Incirlik since the 1960s, per a backgrounder in the New Yorker. That goes back to the days when Incirlik turned into a crucial Cold War base. The story says the vaults “hold about fifty B-61 hydrogen bombs—more than 25% of the nuclear weapons in the NATO stockpile.”
This intervention has precipitated an all-new crisis in the region, prompted the start of at least a tactical withdrawal of U.S. forces from much of the country amid concerns they could be caught in the fighting, and led to calls for an arms embargo and major sanctions on the Turkish government.
Matt Gaetz Caught Spying for Trump
Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) was reportedly booted from a closed-door interview of President Donald Trump’s former top Russia aide, Fiona Hill.
According to CNN’s Senior Congressional Correspondent Manu Rajuand others, Rep. Gaetz, known as a vociferous defender of President Trump and his agenda, was ejected just before the proceeding began.
“Matt Gaetz emerges from closed-door interview with Fiona Hill saying he was kicked out by House Democrats [because] he’s not a member of the three committees conducting the interview,” Raju reported just before 11 a.m. Monday morning. “He said he consulted with the House parliamentarian, who ruled that he could not be there.”
Hill was testifying in front of the House Intelligence, Oversight, and Foreign Affairs committees as part of their impeachment inquiry into Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky and subsequent efforts to conceal the content of the conversation. Hill was subpoenaed by the committees.
Rep. Gaetz is a member of the House Judiciary Committee and does not sit on any of the committees that subpoenaed Hill. Gaetz, as you’ll see, was quick to point out that House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) claimed to have begun an impeachment inquiry before Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) backed one and before the three other committees got involved.
- Russians Are Buying US Farm Land As Trump Tariffs Kill Farmers
- Trump Defends Withdrawal from Syria Because of “A lot of Sand.”
- John Bolton Ordered Staff to Report Trump and Guiliani Because of Illegal Ukrainian “Drug Deal.”
- EMERGENCY: Turkey Holding US Nukes Hostage
- EXPOSED: The Russian Spy Who Worked for Trump