Friday, November 17, 2017

Cornyn's "Background Check" Bill is dumbest Federal Overreaction since post-9/11 "Intelligence reform"

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."
2 Timothy 1:7

By now, we're sure you've heard about John Cornyn's latest anti-Second Amendment gambit.  We had originally intended to write a political post about how this was the final nail in his 2020 coffin.  But that point is obvious by now.

Instead, let's consider the stupidity of Cornyn's proposal:
The Texas Republican’s bill, known as the Fix NICS Act, tries to ensure federal and state authorities accurately report relevant information, including criminal history, to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

“For years, agencies and states haven’t complied with the law, failing to upload these critical records without consequence,” Cornyn said in a statement.

The NICS database is maintained by the FBI and used to determine if a prospective gun buyer has a criminal record or is ineligible to purchase a firearm. The database became the focus of national attention earlier this month after a man fired an assault rifle at a small church during Sunday morning services, killing 26 people and injuring scores others. After the shooting, the U.S. Air Force disclosed that it failed to report the gunman’s history of domestic assault to the database, which should have prohibited him from purchasing a firearm.

Cornyn’s bill requires federal agencies and states to draft plans for how to better report background information to NICS thoroughly and accurately. It also includes a provision to allocate resources to states to help them report felony and domestic abuse charges.


To hold agencies accountable, Cornyn's office said the bill sets up a system of incentives for agencies that comply and penalties for those that fail to.

[Note: Emphasis added.]
  • "Draft plans"= hiring bureaucrats.
  • "Allocate Resources" = spending money.
  • "Sets up a system of incentives" = hiring bureaucrats AND spending money.
In other words, Cornyn proposes to reward bureaucratic failure by giving the bureaucrats that just failed more employees and a bigger budget.

In 2004, George W. Bush signed the "Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act."  The law's stated purpose was to get U.S. intelligence agencies "to share intelliegence" after 9/11.  Specifically, the law created the new Office of National Intelligence.

You can learn more about the Office of National Intelligence's subsequent performance here and here.

Just like Dubya in 2004, John Cornyn in 2017 claims to "solve" a problem that was caused by too much bureaucracy by creating yet another bureaucracy.

Bottom Line: Cornyn's proposal is stupid.  When government bureaucracies fail, they should be eliminated, not expanded.  But at least politicians can go on TV and grandstand about how they're "doing something" (with other people's money)....


Senator John Cornyn: (512) 469-6034

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