Government introduces legislation to scrap long-gun registry

I’ve just learned that the government will be tabling legislation in the Senate to scrap the long-gun registry.  Current legislation is already on the order paper in the House of Commons, introduced by Conservative MP Gerry Breitkreuz as a private members bill (C-301) whereas the legislation in the Senate is a government bill.

Private members bills usually have a tougher time reaching the stage of Royal Assent and thus government legislation will be given a higher priority and indicates that the government is interested in moving to eliminate the long-gun registry as soon as possible.

The bill is being introduced in the Senate and was initiated by Public Safety minister Peter van Loan.  It is being introduced in the Senate due to parliamentary procedure which limits redundant legislation from being concurrently considered by the same Parliamentary body.  I’ve learned that the government is moving to fast-track the scrapping of the long-gun registry putting the legislation on the government’s agenda.

The scrapping of the long-gun registry would fulfill an election promise for the Conservative Party of Canada that goes back to 2004 when Stephen Harper ran for leadership of the party promising accomplish this.

The bill is expected to receive majority support in the House of Commons when it is moved from the upper chamber to the House of Commons for its consideration.

UPDATE: The Senate bill is S-5. (no link yet available)

UPDATE: Public Safety is calling it the “long-gun registry repeal act”

UPDATE: A link to the legislation is now available.

UPDATE: In a fundraiser speech last night, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff indicated that he would whip his Liberal senators (sober second thought, indeed) to vote against the legislation so that it wouldn’t even make it to the House for Canada’s elected representatives to consider. Expect the PM to make his case against the appointed Senate and for Ignatieff to lose any perceived ‘gains’ out west. Ladies and gentlemen, the Liberal Party of Toronto.

Comments

comments

  • Rural and Right

    Lets hope it goes through this time, we have been very patient waiting for the end of the registry.

  • http://phantomobserver.com PhantomObserver

    I guess you want this link, then:

    http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Public

  • arctic_front

    I am thrilled with this new set of bills.

    I have about 3 new rifles picked out and 2 of them since C-68 came into law. I vowed never to buy one until this silly law is repealed. Hopefully it happens before hunting season!

  • http://bigcitylib.blogspot.com bigcitylib

    Government sponsored means less chance of a free vote, I would think.

    Anyway, what are the odds of it coming out of the Senate given the numbers there?

  • http://hallsofmacadamia.blogspot.com/ neo

    *
    “blues clues says… 'soft on crime.'”

    right on, blues!

    I, for one, am thoroughly sick of reading about the criminal excesses of those damn farmers and duck hunters.

    *

  • mecheng

    Because it is farmers with rifles that are involved in all the driveby shootings….

  • Blues Clair

    Conservatives,

    Soft on crime.

  • Blues Clair

    Conservatives,

    Soft on crime.

  • http://www.pomochristian.ca paulm

    This bill (S-5) DOES NOT repeal the registry, it merely allows it to continue electronically, while removing the criminal penalties for non-compliance.

    According to the bill, when you wish to transfer a non-restricted firearm, you must call the registry and verify the license of the person you are transfering it too. There is every reason to believe the CFO will log all of that information. They haven’t eliminated the registry, they’ve just made it paperless.

    C-301 was a MUCH better bill. It actually eliminated the registry, which ought to please all the fiscal conservatives. This one keeps the fiscal downside of the registry, does some good, in that it eliminates the criminal sanction for non-compliance, which was always legally problematic, but it does not kill the worst part of the law, which is the lack of trust in those licensed to possess firearms.

  • http://www.pomochristian.ca paulm

    This bill (S-5) DOES NOT repeal the registry, it merely allows it to continue electronically, while removing the criminal penalties for non-compliance.

    According to the bill, when you wish to transfer a non-restricted firearm, you must call the registry and verify the license of the person you are transfering it too. There is every reason to believe the CFO will log all of that information. They haven’t eliminated the registry, they’ve just made it paperless.

    C-301 was a MUCH better bill. It actually eliminated the registry, which ought to please all the fiscal conservatives. This one keeps the fiscal downside of the registry, does some good, in that it eliminates the criminal sanction for non-compliance, which was always legally problematic, but it does not kill the worst part of the law, which is the lack of trust in those licensed to possess firearms.

  • MaryT

    There are no Bloc or NDP senators so this will be conservatives vs liberals. Defeat this bill and PMSH will campaign on, we tried but liberals stopped it and that is the reason the Senate must be reformed.
    Pass the bill and send it back to the House for a vote and the onus is again on the liberals, ndp and Bloc to pass or defeat it. Western farmers and others will not vote for iggy even if the bill passes, too afraid of another NEP, carbon tax, cap and trade etc. Great move by our government. Pass the bill, lose the urban vote, defeat the bill, lose any gains made in the west.
    Of course some female reported on Newman this is being done to counter the great gains Iggy is making in the west.
    Hope someone spies on that dinner tonight, how many paid to go, how many were rounded up and paid to go.
    If libs claim an increase in funds, remember today they got their first pymt for the 1.95/vote.

  • Mike

    I don’t think I like it… Not at all!

    They’ve done away with the “registration certificate” part, but you still need to call in and get CFO approval for every single transfer… with the firearm’s information and the buyer’s information.

    This jsut open the doors to the provinces to start their own “registry” database @ the CFO’s office.

  • Mike

    I don’t think I like it… Not at all!

    They’ve done away with the “registration certificate” part, but you still need to call in and get CFO approval for every single transfer… with the firearm’s information and the buyer’s information.

    This jsut open the doors to the provinces to start their own “registry” database @ the CFO’s office.

  • RL

    bigcitylib,

    I agree – the government bill will never move out of the Senate, and if anything, threatens the viability of Breitkruz’s PMB. Call me a cynic, but this looks to me like an attempt by PVL to scuttle attempts to repeal the registry without having to visibly move against it. I’m very disappointed by this news.

  • RL

    bigcitylib,

    I agree – the government bill will never move out of the Senate, and if anything, threatens the viability of Breitkruz’s PMB. Call me a cynic, but this looks to me like an attempt by PVL to scuttle attempts to repeal the registry without having to visibly move against it. I’m very disappointed by this news.

  • Gayle

    Yes Mary – because the biggest issue in these troubling economic times is the long gun registry.

    I see Harper is so worried about Iggy that he continues to pander to his base, at the expense of all those Quebec and urban voters.

    I am happy – if nothing else Harper is ensuring he never gets a majority.

  • Gayle

    Yes Mary – because the biggest issue in these troubling economic times is the long gun registry.

    I see Harper is so worried about Iggy that he continues to pander to his base, at the expense of all those Quebec and urban voters.

    I am happy – if nothing else Harper is ensuring he never gets a majority.

  • http://terahertzatheist.ca Ian

    “The bill is expected to receive majority support in the House of Commons when it is moved from the upper chamber to the House of Commons for its consideration.”

    Not sure who’s expecting this bill to pass. It will be somewhat interesting to see where Iggy falls (likely in line with Harper because the man has no spine and is all talk).

  • http://terahertzatheist.ca Ian

    “The bill is expected to receive majority support in the House of Commons when it is moved from the upper chamber to the House of Commons for its consideration.”

    Not sure who’s expecting this bill to pass. It will be somewhat interesting to see where Iggy falls (likely in line with Harper because the man has no spine and is all talk).

  • http://www.pomochristian.ca paulm

    This is a terrible bill that is a betrayal of the support gun owners have given the CPC.

    This bill DOES NOT abolish the registry. It simply makes it paperless.

    http://www.cdnshootingsports.org/2009/04/Senate_April_Fools.html

    I feel betrayed by my party.

    Call me for more donations CPC, you’ll get a piece of my mind.

  • http://www.pomochristian.ca paulm

    This is a terrible bill that is a betrayal of the support gun owners have given the CPC.

    This bill DOES NOT abolish the registry. It simply makes it paperless.

    http://www.cdnshootingsports.org/2009/04/Senate_April_Fools.html

    I feel betrayed by my party.

    Call me for more donations CPC, you’ll get a piece of my mind.

  • jb

    Its worth mentioning Stephen that although the Bill eliminates the CURRENT registry, it would burden the provincial Chief Firearms Officers with the task of maintaining the registrations for long guns.

    We would end up with the same waste and uselessness of the original registry, but 13 times over. Each registry trying to talk to each other. I didn’t think the current registry could get worse, but it looks like someone pulled a rabbit out of their hat!

    Already there is backlash from the legal long gun community (read Western Canada), there is little doubt that this will cost many a vote from the die-hard base.

    In the end we are looking at taking the long gun registry, renaming it and making it worse. It is not being abolished. Who the hell came up with this idea???? Iggy’s people?

  • jb

    Its worth mentioning Stephen that although the Bill eliminates the CURRENT registry, it would burden the provincial Chief Firearms Officers with the task of maintaining the registrations for long guns.

    We would end up with the same waste and uselessness of the original registry, but 13 times over. Each registry trying to talk to each other. I didn’t think the current registry could get worse, but it looks like someone pulled a rabbit out of their hat!

    Already there is backlash from the legal long gun community (read Western Canada), there is little doubt that this will cost many a vote from the die-hard base.

    In the end we are looking at taking the long gun registry, renaming it and making it worse. It is not being abolished. Who the hell came up with this idea???? Iggy’s people?

  • Anonymous

    It’ll be refreshing to see the money thrown into that hole every year finally be moved to better law enforcement and penalties for those who use firearms for criminal purposes.

  • Anonymous

    It’ll be refreshing to see the money thrown into that hole every year finally be moved to better law enforcement and penalties for those who use firearms for criminal purposes.

  • RL

    This is not good news – this is a thinly veiled attempt by PVL to appear to be doing something about the registry, while same killing the vastly superior C-301. S-5 will *only* end the federal record-keeping of the registry, and will permit each province to carry on with their own databases. S-5 still mandates that every long-arm ‘transfer’ is reported to the CFO of the province, and that the province may keep their records. This will require *no* activating legislation from a province to do so. We’re being had.

  • RL

    This is not good news – this is a thinly veiled attempt by PVL to appear to be doing something about the registry, while same killing the vastly superior C-301. S-5 will *only* end the federal record-keeping of the registry, and will permit each province to carry on with their own databases. S-5 still mandates that every long-arm ‘transfer’ is reported to the CFO of the province, and that the province may keep their records. This will require *no* activating legislation from a province to do so. We’re being had.

  • Ted

    Uh, that analysis does not make any sense. It has been brought to the House twice before. It is currently being brought once again to the House. It was defeated twice before and it will no doubt be defeated again. How on earth can this possibly be construed as an issue that can be spun as a need for senate reform? Sorry that’s just bizarre.

    Also, we’ve seen what the gun registry vote will do: we’ve had three elections with a unified Conservative Party with this issue on the agenda. This is not any longer a ballot box issue – we know how the parties vote – especially in these economic times.

    So why exactly is Harper re-introducing a bill that has been bounced by the elected members of the House of Common already and is no doubt going to be bounced once again in the House and in the Senate?

    Obviously, Harper is trying to recoup some support in his base. He’s abandoned this core conservative principles over spending, small government, fiscal prudence and deficits, federal-provincial balance, elected senators, pork, accountability, transparency, strong defence, corporate welfare, etc. etc. etc.

    So what does he do? He can’t grow his party and he has to stop the bleeding so he tacks to the social conservatives. But even then it is pretty weak-kneed stuff: attacks on the gun registry that will fail, minor tweaks to sentencing rules that are made to seem like a big deal (no more two-for-ones? that’s a big deal??), announcing anti-gang laws that duplicate existing anti-gang laws, many minor tweaks to immigration laws announced with grand gusto, taking a “strong stand” against polygamy, a major announcement from Toews that they are going to change the way crime statistics are reported (because the declining crime rates don’t help a hyped-on-crime agenda, I guess).

    Is THIS the policy dream that fires belly of the conservative these days???? I guess he has to do something somewhat barely conservative so he can claim that, despite his actual actions in government over the last three years and all other appearances to the contrary, he is still a conservative underneath it all. At least, when he sends that email around demanding you pay over more of your money for more of the same kind of thing you voted against before he got elected Prime Minister.

  • Ted

    Uh, that analysis does not make any sense. It has been brought to the House twice before. It is currently being brought once again to the House. It was defeated twice before and it will no doubt be defeated again. How on earth can this possibly be construed as an issue that can be spun as a need for senate reform? Sorry that’s just bizarre.

    Also, we’ve seen what the gun registry vote will do: we’ve had three elections with a unified Conservative Party with this issue on the agenda. This is not any longer a ballot box issue – we know how the parties vote – especially in these economic times.

    So why exactly is Harper re-introducing a bill that has been bounced by the elected members of the House of Common already and is no doubt going to be bounced once again in the House and in the Senate?

    Obviously, Harper is trying to recoup some support in his base. He’s abandoned this core conservative principles over spending, small government, fiscal prudence and deficits, federal-provincial balance, elected senators, pork, accountability, transparency, strong defence, corporate welfare, etc. etc. etc.

    So what does he do? He can’t grow his party and he has to stop the bleeding so he tacks to the social conservatives. But even then it is pretty weak-kneed stuff: attacks on the gun registry that will fail, minor tweaks to sentencing rules that are made to seem like a big deal (no more two-for-ones? that’s a big deal??), announcing anti-gang laws that duplicate existing anti-gang laws, many minor tweaks to immigration laws announced with grand gusto, taking a “strong stand” against polygamy, a major announcement from Toews that they are going to change the way crime statistics are reported (because the declining crime rates don’t help a hyped-on-crime agenda, I guess).

    Is THIS the policy dream that fires belly of the conservative these days???? I guess he has to do something somewhat barely conservative so he can claim that, despite his actual actions in government over the last three years and all other appearances to the contrary, he is still a conservative underneath it all. At least, when he sends that email around demanding you pay over more of your money for more of the same kind of thing you voted against before he got elected Prime Minister.

  • http://www.JimsFishing.com Jim Pook

    This is good news! It looks like the Harper government is finally going after this mess. Interesting that it is starting out in the Senate, which is dominated by Liberals. Let’s see how the West will respond if Iggy’s minions vote it down. It should go a long way toward having Iggy shoot himself in the foot. Either way, Bill S-5 is full of win.

  • http://www.JimsFishing.com Jim Pook

    This is good news! It looks like the Harper government is finally going after this mess. Interesting that it is starting out in the Senate, which is dominated by Liberals. Let’s see how the West will respond if Iggy’s minions vote it down. It should go a long way toward having Iggy shoot himself in the foot. Either way, Bill S-5 is full of win.

  • http://www.totalrecoil.wordpress.com totalrecoil

    If Senate bill S-5 replaces the Breitkreuz private member’s bill, C-301, the government will have done Canadian firearm owners no real favours. Certainly they can generate the spin and say they fulfilled their promise to get rid of the federal long-gun registry, but with the requirement in S-5 for all non-restricted firearm transactions to be approved by the Chief Firearms Officer there will still be a registry in place, just not in the old place. This is either an incredibly cynical move on the part of the government or they have been blindsided by their bureaucrats. Either way, they need to be held to account for this move.

  • http://www.totalrecoil.wordpress.com totalrecoil

    If Senate bill S-5 replaces the Breitkreuz private member’s bill, C-301, the government will have done Canadian firearm owners no real favours. Certainly they can generate the spin and say they fulfilled their promise to get rid of the federal long-gun registry, but with the requirement in S-5 for all non-restricted firearm transactions to be approved by the Chief Firearms Officer there will still be a registry in place, just not in the old place. This is either an incredibly cynical move on the part of the government or they have been blindsided by their bureaucrats. Either way, they need to be held to account for this move.

  • http://www.bluelikeyou.com/ Joanne (T.B.)

    The bill is expected to receive majority support in the House of Commons

    How do you see that happening, Stephen? The Star is reporting this morning that MI said he's not passing any more bills.

  • Terry_1

    I think your readers will be interested to know how much money Iggy raised just last night to close out his first quarter of fund raising:

    A million bucks…that's what the Liberal Party raised, tonight, at the dinner at the Royal York: more than a million bucks. The event was organized by Belinda Stronach and Frank McKenna, and the place was packed. Tables filled every available inch of space. There were Liberals hanging from the rafters – but I saw quite a few Tories, too, present to check out the new guy.

    The new guy didn't disappoint. Bob Rae did the intro, Dom LeBlanc did the thank you, and Michael Ignatieff mocked the Reformatories – down in “a basement” somewhere, as he put it, poring through his 16 books, frantically looking for something to use in an attack ad. If he had known how much time they'd spend on it, he said, “I would've written a few more books.”

    Man oh man, this guy is so going to be Prime Minister.

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    Well, I expected this last night before Iggy's speech. I had heard that rural Liberals would have been onside with this (and they might have been) if Ignatieff hadn't whipped the Senate vote.

    Chalk up another reason to elect the upper chamber.

    I'll update the post soon when I'm back at the computer (rather than the blackberry).

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    $1 million eh? Now just a couple more to get out of debt and $20 million more to catch up to match the Tory warchest.

  • Peter

    “Bloc Torontois”, says it better and reflects Ontario's two solitudes.

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    Yes, well done

  • Anonymous

    I think your readers will be interested to know how much money Iggy raised just last night to close out his first quarter of fund raising:

    A million bucks…that’s what the Liberal Party raised, tonight, at the dinner at the Royal York: more than a million bucks. The event was organized by Belinda Stronach and Frank McKenna, and the place was packed. Tables filled every available inch of space. There were Liberals hanging from the rafters – but I saw quite a few Tories, too, present to check out the new guy.

    The new guy didn’t disappoint. Bob Rae did the intro, Dom LeBlanc did the thank you, and Michael Ignatieff mocked the Reformatories – down in “a basement” somewhere, as he put it, poring through his 16 books, frantically looking for something to use in an attack ad. If he had known how much time they’d spend on it, he said, “I would’ve written a few more books.”

    Man oh man, this guy is so going to be Prime Minister.

  • Anonymous

    I think your readers will be interested to know how much money Iggy raised just last night to close out his first quarter of fund raising:

    A million bucks…that’s what the Liberal Party raised, tonight, at the dinner at the Royal York: more than a million bucks. The event was organized by Belinda Stronach and Frank McKenna, and the place was packed. Tables filled every available inch of space. There were Liberals hanging from the rafters – but I saw quite a few Tories, too, present to check out the new guy.

    The new guy didn’t disappoint. Bob Rae did the intro, Dom LeBlanc did the thank you, and Michael Ignatieff mocked the Reformatories – down in “a basement” somewhere, as he put it, poring through his 16 books, frantically looking for something to use in an attack ad. If he had known how much time they’d spend on it, he said, “I would’ve written a few more books.”

    Man oh man, this guy is so going to be Prime Minister.

  • Gayle

    They do not need to “catch up”. They only need sufficient funds to fun an election – and it looks like that will not be a problem.

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    The cap is $20 million, and the Conservatives will spend it.

  • Liz J

    Wowee, a million bucks, only 19 more to go before being capped. Will some of this lucre fund the Seinfeld leadership convention? Help feed Mimi?

  • Security

    Who cares? This legislation does absolutely nothing to address the real issues with C-68, issues that Mr. Breitkreuz and indeed Mr. Harper are quite aware of. Issues that they promised would be taken care of once the Conservatives were in power. The minority excuse is getting tired. I am being discriminated against in my own country so Liberals could get votes and Conservatives are allowing that to continue. Worse, they attempt to placate with this thin, watered down and completely useless gruel. How stupid do they take us to be? It makes me wonder if they also think that I am a backward trogdolyte because I choose not to live in a city. Because of this and other stunned moves by the braintrust, they have lost my vote. I'm nobody, but I seem to have a lot of company. Pass it on Stephen. The base is pissed.

  • Gayle

    They are going to have to! In fact, judging by their history, they may have to spend more than that. :)

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    Those ads don't write themselves! Well, I believe Dion wrote the CPC's last set of ads.

  • Liz J

    You think so? What base is that?

  • mafwoj

    Those of use who live in the west and pay attention to this issue (among others)
    IE A good chunk of former Reformers
    If the Party keeps up its recent behavior we might just go back to those days

  • Bazoo

    Bill C-301 had some merrit. Bill S-5 is a total sham and a sell out of the people that put you in power. It is time this “Conservative Government” did the right thing. Grow some balls Harper, Van Loan . End the Long Gun Registry like you promised or leave it alone. We are not stupid. We know Crappy legislation when we see it. Nothing less than Bill C-301 as it was tabled is acceptable. If I’m going to get shafted I prefer it is by the Liberals. I’m used to that