A constant throughout President Barack Obama’s tenure in office has been his unwavering commitment to more restrictive gun control measures, despite significant opposition from Second Amendment supporters in Congress and in the general population.
One particular avenue Obama has pursued to attempt to limit the number and type of firearms available to American citizens is through his support for the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty, an international agreement ostensibly focused on stemming illegal sales of conventional heavy arms to traffickers and warlords but written in a broad and vague manner to include “small arms” such as rifles, shotguns and handguns.
A major component of the ATT was the creation of an extensive international arms registry to be compiled from smaller arms registries of “end users” set up in the individual nations that have ratified the treaty.
Though Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have signed on to the ATT, they have not submitted it to the Senate for ratification, likely because a bipartisan group of more than 50 senators told Obama in no uncertain terms that they would never ratify the treaty or permit it to be implemented.
Nevertheless Obama has done virtually everything he can do, short of ratification, to lay the groundwork for the future implementation of the gun control agreement, needing only a Democrat-controlled Senate to finalize everything.
According to The Daily Signal, this was confirmed at an August conference in Geneva regarding the treaty, where U.S. delegate William Malzahn informed the international community that the Obama administration was in full compliance with the treaty — short of ratification, that is.
“The United States remains committed to the Arms Trade Treaty, which we signed in September 2013. We are still working on the package to transmit the treaty to the U.S. Senate for its advice and consent to ratification. It is not clear when we will complete this, but we are actively working on it,” Malzahn stated.
“As we pursue ratification, let me assure everyone that the United States is already fully compliant with the requirements of the (Arms Trade Treaty), as the U.S. national control system exceeds those requirements,” he added.
There has been growing pressure on the U.S. from other countries demanding the implementation of stricter gun control, but that is unlikely to sway the current Congress from its stance.
However, should Democrats regain control of the Senate in November, there could very well be a small window of opportunity for Obama to try to ram the ATT through for ratification between the time the new Congress is sworn in on Jan. 3. and he leaves office on Jan. 20.
One thing is certain: If Obama fails to achieve ratification of the ATT but is succeeded by Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, ratifying that treaty would be near the top of her anti-gun agenda.
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