Mayors of several so-called “sanctuary cities” are having fits over President Donald Trump’s executive order to take away federal funding from municipalities that refuse to enforce federal immigration laws, according to The Hill. The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms has zeroed in on Seattle Mayor Ed Murray for what the group calls “constitutional hypocrisy.”
At issue, says the grassroots gun rights organization, is the political double standard. These mayors are all for protecting the rights of people who may be here illegally, but when it comes to the gun rights of law-abiding citizens, Murray and his contemporaries try to regulate it into oblivion, they contend.
CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, who has a long memory regarding Murray’s history of gun control advocacy, pounced on that remark in a statement to the press. He recalled how Murray was embarrassed four years ago when, as a member of the State Senate in Olympia, was the prime sponsor of a bill to ban so-called “assault weapons” that initially included a provision to allow warrantless annual searches of gun owners’ homes by sheriff’s deputies to see how “grandfathered” firearms were stored.
When Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat wrote about that, he acknowledged, “I have been blasting the NRA for its paranoia in the gun-control debate. But…you can’t fully blame them, when cops going door-to-door shows up in legislation.”
Murray and his co-sponsors hastily removed the offensive tenet, but many believe it was only because he finally got caught trying to slip that provision into state law. The language was identical to at least two earlier bills that anti-gunners had tried to pass, but had failed to get momentum. Likewise, Murray’s SB 5737 died in committee.
“When it comes to violating the Constitution, Ed Murray has expert experience,” Gottlieb observed.
He asserted that Murray, a liberal Democrat, “would eviscerate the Second Amendment.” As Seattle’s mayor, Murray signed a “gun violence tax” into law in 2015, and the city was promptly sued by the Second Amendment Foundation, National Rifle Association, National Shooting Sports Foundation and two firearms retailers.
The city is also being sued separately by SAF and the senior editor of its monthly magazine, TheGunMag.com (both print and online) over a Public Records Act issue regarding revenues from that gun and ammunition tax. The city council originally estimated revenues from the gun tax could hit $300,000 to $500,000 annually, but the city has declined to release its revenue figure.
In his tirade, Murray told supporters and members of the press that “These are not criminals, these are our friends, these are our neighbors.”
Gottlieb fired right back:
“Not always, Ed. Jill Marie Sundberg was murdered in Grant County last month and now the authorities have charged three men with the crime. Two other men are being held as material witnesses. All five are in this country illegally. So, tell us, Ed, do you want these fellows as your neighbors?”
Sundberg was reportedly shot 13 times and left lying at a parking area off an arterial highway near Interstate 90.
During a Q&A with reporters Wednesday, the mayor seemed to blame guns for a high-profile 2007 slaying at the University of Washington campus by a man who had, according to HistoryLink.org “for years…eluded immigration officials with an expired 90-day visa.”
In 2007, Rebecca Griego was murdered by ex-boyfriend Jonathan Rowan on the UW campus. He was wanted by the police for questioning in a theft investigation and had also long overstayed a 90-day visa, so he was in the country illegally.
Asked by a reporter about that, Murray deflected to gun control.
“The question is,” Murray replied, “are we finally going to do something about regulating guns in this country? He (Trump) brought up a series of parents who have lost children to people who were not documented. You know, how many times have I spent time with parents whose sons have been shot dead in this city?
“There is an issue of guns, not an issue of immigration,” the mayor insisted.
Gottlieb noted that the Second Amendment Foundation, which he founded some 40 years ago, has successfully defended legal resident aliens in court on Second Amendment issues.
“But that’s not the point,” he explained. “Murray hides behind the constitution to serve his liberal political agenda, but he’s never been worried about stepping on the Second Amendment. If you defend the constitution, you have to defend all of it. If you expect gun owners to obey the gun laws, you need to obey the immigration laws. Only a hypocrite would expect to have it any other way.”