From the Huffington Post:

Elizabeth Warren Wants To Raise Taxes On Guns And Ammunition
The Democratic senator and 2020 presidential candidate released a plan aimed at reducing gun deaths by 80%.

Oh great, she wants to take the tax the Chicago and Seattle have implemented at the Federal level and cranked up to 11.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) wants to sharply increase taxes on guns and ammunition as part of a comprehensive new plan to reduce gun deaths in the United States by 80%.

Warren, who is set to appear along with most of the other 20-plus Democratic presidential candidates at a gun control forum in Des Moines, Iowa, on Saturday, is also proposing universal background checks, federal gun licensing, a one-week waiting period on all gun purchases to limit impulsive violence, a ban on assault weapons and a newly empowered Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, among a host of other suggestions.

A host of suggestions that won’t curb mass shootings and are most likely Unconstitutional.  I don’t remember any other Constitutional right requiring a Federal license.  I don’t need a permit to operate this blog.

The one week waiting period won’t do squat considering that in every mass shooting I can think of where the shooter bought his gun or guns, they were purchased and stockpiled for weeks or months in advance.

Warren chose the 80% mark for gun violence death reductions in order to echo the 80% reduction in driving deaths since 1965, when Congress decided the number of people dying in automobile accidents was unacceptable.

So she has no proof that her plan will reduce gun deaths by that much.  She just picked it because it sounded good.  It’s bullshit.

“We’ll start by implementing solutions that we believe will work,” she wrote. “We’ll continue by constantly revisiting and updating those solutions based on new public health research. And we’ll make structural changes to end the ability of corrupt extremists to block our government from defending the lives of our people.”

Two things set Warren’s plan apart: the taxes and her emphasis on eliminating the influence of the National Rifle Association.

the Democrats have never met a tax they didn’t want to implement or something they didn’t want to tax.

For a century, the federal government has imposed an excise tax on manufacturers and importers of guns and ammunition. Handguns are taxed at 10%, while all other guns and ammunition are taxed at 11%. Warren would raise the tax on guns to 30% and the tax on ammunition to 50%.

Holy shit, a 30% gun tax and 50% ammo tax.  That’s a lot.

She has made it crystal clear that the purpose of her tax is to reduce the access to a Constitutional Right by making it prohibitively more expensive.

This is the very definition of a poll tax.  When Democrats could no longer block Blacks from voting, they charged a fee that many Blacks couldn’t afford.

Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections was a Supreme Court case from 1966 that decided that poll taxes were a 14th Amendment violation.  A prohibitively expensive gun tax will have the same result.  Denying lower-income people, especially minorities, equal access to a Civil Right by making it too expensive to exercise.  This may go double for a Federal gun license, depending on the cost of the license.   Remember that Illinois tried to raise the cost of a FOID by 1000% to $100 to reduce the number of people that would get it.

Speaking of Illinois.  The Chicago gun tax did nothing to curb gun crime.  Criminals who steal guns or sell them illegally on the streets don’t pay taxes.

All this would do is reduce participation in shooting sports and harm law-abiding gun owners.  But that’s the point and she knows it.

Democrats have been using taxes to deny undesirable people their Civil Rights since the Republicans took away their slaves.  Elizabeth Warren wants to do that again.

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By J. Kb

13 thoughts on “Elizabeth Warren comes out in favor of a poll tax”
  1. So Fauxahontas is literally being a racist & wants to continue the “great” traditions of the DemonKKKrat party.

    Let me show you my shocked face. 😐

  2. As long as she also levies a 30% tax on printing presses, computers, paper, pens, etc… And a 50% tax on ad revenues, book sales (including religious books), charitable donations, etc..

    1. Don’t forget a $200 tax to avoid testifying against yourself, a $500 tax to not be flagged for random police pat-downs, and $10,000 court fee before you can have an attorney represent you in anything.

      Like the man said, “Progressives” never met a tax they didn’t want to implement, or anything they didn’t want to tax.

  3. A host of suggestions that won’t curb mass shootings and are most likely Unconstitutional.

    Curbing mass shootings isn’t the goal. They’re great fundraising opportunities; “Progressives” would be shooting themselves in the foot (metaphorically speaking) stopping them. “Never let a crisis go to waste,” and all that.

    And being Unconstitutional is a feature, not a bug. Anything Unconstitutional they get to stick just weakens the Constitution, and the more they can ignore it, the better.

    “We’ll start by implementing solutions that we believe will work,” she wrote.

    “Believe”? You mean, you’re forcing your religion on the rest of the country?

    Putting aside that continuing to believe something that has been factually disproven is a sign of insanity, let me tell you what I believe, and my apologies to our gracious host for what will almost certainly turn into a rant:

    I believe in the Holy Trinity: the Father (God), the Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit.

    I believe that man was created by God in the beginning, that God created man in His own image, and that man owes his very existence to God’s divine providence.

    I believe that God, being the granter of life, holds that life in inestimable value, and abhors its casual or senseless loss. I believe that God’s commandments, in addition to being indicative of God’s moral compass, are fundamentally designed to protect and prolong man’s life. I believe that when God commands something, He forbids the opposite — and conversely when God forbids something, He commands the opposite.

    Following from that, I believe that it’s not enough to merely not do the thing God forbade; if God has forbidden it, it’s a man’s duty to prevent it. Therefore I believe that when man was commanded, “Thou shalt not commit murder,” God also was commanding the opposite — “Thou shalt protect and preserve innocent life” — and investing man with the moral authority to do so.

    Finally, I believe that God designed man as a user of tools, and that man was given the ability to choose for himself which tools are most suitable for each purpose.

    Thus, I believe that when I choose a firearm for the purpose of defending life — particularly but not exclusively the lives of myself and my family — I am fulfilling God’s Holy writ. I believe to do otherwise is to reject God’s commandments, and Scripture is chock full of history of what happens when God’s people reject His commandments (spoiler: it usually results in slavery and/or death).

    That is what I believe (and perhaps J.Kb can chime in, but I believe that other than the first statement about the Trinity, all of this is Old Testament and consistent across all Judeo-Christian belief systems).

    But I, unlike Senator Warren, am satisfied with living my own beliefs and not forcing them on others. I’m not going to require everyone to have a gun just because I believe that protecting life pleases my God.

    All I ask in return is the opposite: that the State doesn’t require me to not have a gun just because Senator Warren believes it makes us safer (I’m giving her the benefit of doubt on this, even though factually she doesn’t reject armed security, so she knows otherwise).

    Again, sorry for the rant, but a politician creating policy based on what he/she “believes” — and not based on fact — offends my conscience to the core and demands a response.

  4. I remember when that other great MA communist Teddy “Chappaquiddick” Kennedy pushed for taxes on ammo. I’m not sure what number he suggested; quite a lot higher than Warren’s, I think. Of course, the 50% is merely a starting point, somewhat like the 1% income tax that was passed a century ago.

  5. A few days ago, a friend made a similar ammo tax proposition, but it was even higher — 500%. He often posts about BLM and historical wrongs against American blacks (and is married to a black woman and has three kids with her), so I tried the poll tax angle, reminding him it was used against blacks. He completely refused to acknowledge that point.

    1. I wonder how he’d respond to the well documented fact that the original gun laws were designed to make blacks into defenseless victims and enable the KKK terrorism. (See: the racist roots of gun control by Clayton Cramer.) Or the fact that gun ownership helped protect 1960s era civil rights workers in the south. (See: the gun culture and its enemies, edited by Tonso.) Or the fact that MLK was an NRA member. Or the fact (clearly expressed in the Congressional debates) that the 14th Amendment was explicitly designed to stop the disarming of freedmen.

      1. Well, after his ignoring of my previously-mentioned point, he made a typical “Oh, yeah, what do you propose besides doing NOTHING?!?!?,” then ignored exactly what I proposed (i.e. enforcing current laws, including giving multiple examples). I thought of mentioning some of what you laid out, but I figured I was just pissing in the wind at that point, so I exited the conversation and unfollowed/hid him on Facebook.

  6. A couple of points. First, just because something won’t fix the entire problem, is not a reason not to do anything. So-called sin taxes don’t fix whatever problem they’re aimed at, but they can have an effect on: alcohol, cigarettes, soda, plastic bags. Second, as to the constitutionality here, remember that Scalia said that regulation of gun ownership is compatible with the Second Amendment. The question is finding the right form of regulation. Maybe taxes fit into such a regime, maybe they don’t. But I think you’re assuming a couple of steps too far to just call them unconstitutional. And, third, yeah this isn’t the NY Times, but the headline here is pretty misleading. You’re drawing the comparison between Warren’s call for a tax on guns to the poll tax, but she did not in any way “come out in favor of a poll tax.”

    1. I don’t remember Scalia ever justifying that dictum about regulations being Constitutional; as far as I am concerned that was just an unsupported opinion and rather disappointing given the source.
      On “the right for of regulation”, the test I like to apply is to replace guns by newspapers or churches in the proposal and see if it still looks ok. Do you need an FNL to sell newspapers? Or a News Manufacturer License to print them? Are ministers licensed by the Federal government?
      As for taxes, when they are deliberately set so high as to make the item unaffordable to those of modest means, it is a ban in disguise. The NFA is an example of this; Teddy’s ammo tax was another. The form of the proposal is merely an attempt to hide the malicious intent. If newspapers were taxed at 50 percent, would that be Constitutional? Maybe. If they were taxed at 500%, would it be? Clearly not.
      I remember we once had a Stamp Tax that taxed newspapers, among other things. It did not end well for the government that imposed it.

  7. I just scanned again Scalia’s Heller opinion. The ruling is pretty far-reaching regarding bans of handguns, but doesn’t go farther. I’m not sure I agree with your classification of this as dictum. But even if the lines about regulation in general are dictum, remember that dicta are persuasive, if not mandatory precedent. Now, could an even more conservative Court go even farther than Scalia did? Sure, but that’s not the state of the law at present.

    So here are the pertinent parts for me from Scalia’s opinion:

    “Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited. From Blackstone through the 19th-century cases, commentators and courts routinely explained that the right was not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.”

    “nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.”

    “We also recognize another important limitation on the right to keep and carry arms. Miller said, as we have explained, that the sorts of weapons protected were those “in common use at the time.” 307 U. S., at 179. We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of “dangerous and unusual weapons.”

    I think it’s also important to point out that the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court left in place the licensing requirements of DC’s handgun law.

  8. As far as taxes on ammo or certain weapons go, I’m fine with it. Sometimes you propose an idea to expand the conversation. Maybe it widens the Overton window. Maybe it’s a position to take in negotiations over gun control legislation that you use as a bargaining chip. Something to give up to get something else you care about. Maybe it’s worthwhile to get one passed so it can be ruled on and give some certainty to the issue in the courts. What I know that Dems should not do is take it off the table just because people yell and scream about it being tantamount to a poll tax.

    I also like her wealth tax idea. I can definitely see it being challenged in court and struck down by a conservative majority on the Supreme Court. Or maybe not. And you can probably just do the same thing by adjusting the income tax, which is definitely constitutional. But she proposes the wealth tax to point out the problem with accumulated wealth and how it’s been gained and how it’s used. It’s political, just like the tax on guns and ammo.

    At the end of the day, the Dems are the ones trying to find ideas to get some solid gun control passed in this country. The GOP is standing for trying not to do something. The hide the ball and change the subject. Considering where the polling is among voters of both parties, I like to be on the side of doing something.

Only one rule: Don't be a dick.

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