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Kansas legislature

Kansas Legislature

Gun bill sponsor rebuffs legal concerns

February 21, 2013

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— The chief sponsor of a bill that supporters say will protect Kansas gun owners from federal restrictions has accused the state attorney general’s office of trying to gut the legislation.

Earlier this week, Rep. John Rubin, R-Shawnee, took issue with written testimony from an assistant attorney general who highlighted issues with House Bill 2199, known as the Second Amendment Protection Act.

The bill states that any personal firearm, accessory or ammunition that is owned or manufactured in Kansas and that remains in the state is not subject to federal law. Under the bill, federal authorities trying to enforce any kind of rule on such a firearm would face possible prison time.

And the measure would prohibit doctors — but not psychiatrists — from inquiring whether a patient owns a gun.

In written testimony, Assistant Attorney General Charles Klebe, who is responsible for licensing concealed carry guns, said the office was neutral on the bill.

But he expressed legal concerns with the measure.

“To state the obvious, the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution cannot be waived by state law, and any conflict between a valid federal law and a state law will be resolved by the courts in favor of the federal enactment,” Klebe said.

Klebe said if Kansas officers tried to prevent federal authorities from enforcing federal gun laws, the Kansas officers could face charges of obstruction of justice.

And prohibiting doctors from asking questions about a patient’s firearms ownership raised issues about limiting a physician’s First Amendment right to free speech, he said.

A fiscal note attached to the bill states that the attorney general’s office believes the bill would probably result in multiple lawsuits and could cost the state $825,000 during the next three years.

“The cases would probably have to be outsourced and if the state lost the litigation, it would be ordered to pay the attorneys’ fees of the prevailing party,” the fiscal note said.

Rubin, who also is an attorney, said Klebe was “frankly, dead wrong.”

“The Supremacy Clause does not apply to federal laws, regulations or orders that are unconstitutional,” Rubin said.

Klebe’s suggestions, Rubin said, would make the remaining bill meaningless. The measure has 50 legislative sponsors, and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach helped write it.

Jerry Slaughter, executive director of the Kansas Medical Society, testified against the provision that would prevent physicians from asking patients about weapons.

Slaughter said sometimes physicians seek information about guns at home just as a safety precaution when treating patients who may be depressed or taking medications.

Rubin said he could live with dropping that part of the bill, but several members of the House Federal and State Affairs Committee said they wanted to retain it.

Rep. Ken Corbet, R-Topeka, said if he visits a doctor for a sore throat, why would the doctor ask about a firearm? “Why would that even have to come up?” he asked.

Slaughter said it didn’t. He also tried to assure committee members that under the federal Affordable Care Act there was no requirement that a physician ask about guns or that a patient be required to answer.

But several committee members and Rubin said they were suspicious that President Barack Obama would issue an executive order that would require physicians to request that information.

He said the legislation would prevent any gun owned or built in Kansas and remaining in the state from being controlled by “any past, present or future federal law, rule or regulation of any kind.”

Comments

question4u 1 year, 9 months ago

"To state the obvious...," Klebe said.

Sorry Mr. Klebe. Have you forgotten that this is Kansas? Logic doesn't apply here. $825,000 in defense of indefensible laws doesn't matter. Our extremist legislators are perfectly happy to spend public funds defending unconstitutional laws. Infringing on doctors' right to free speech won't bother many in the Legislature either. Freedom of speech is nothing compared to your right to sell guns to mentally unstable individuals without interference from the federal government.

The Legislature should definitely pass a law that sneers at the federal government and the U.S. Constitution. After all, how is Kansas going to get businesses to flock to the state and create that promised prosperity if Kansas doesn't look like a stronghold for anti-American wackos? There are still a few people in faraway places like New Zealand who don't yet have the idea that most Kansans hide out in their backyard bunkers gripping assault rifles and Bibles open to The Book of Revelation. This proposed law could really get the stereotypes cemented in place. Just get Virgil Peck to crack a few more jokes about murdering immigrants and everyone is going to want to move here.

jimmyjms 1 year, 9 months ago

Absolute insanity. Rubin is a moron.

Centerville 1 year, 9 months ago

"We don't even let them have ideas. Why would we let them have guns?" -- Stalin

Keith 1 year, 9 months ago

"Klebe's suggestions, Rubin said, would make the remaining bill meaningless. The measure has 50 legislative sponsors, and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach helped write it."

Well there you have it, if Kobach helped write it you know it will pass muster, after all he's never had any adverse rulings on any of the bills he's helped so many OTHER states to write.

tomatogrower 1 year, 9 months ago

These people could care less if emotionally unstable people have guns. Heck, the president of NRA has a son in prison for shooting at a driver in a road rage incident. He will probably promote guns for felons, when his son is released.

tomatogrower 1 year, 9 months ago

So, Mike, do you think people who are mentally ill and felons should be allowed to legally own guns?

verity 1 year, 9 months ago

I am just amazed that they can keep coming up with more totally idiotic crap. Got to give them credit for that. I mean it just goes on and on and on. I'm not nearly that creative.

Kansas: 2013 Home of the legislature with the largest number of stupid and inane bills proposed ever on earth anywhere, anytime.

Maybe they're trying for the Guinnes Book of Records?

verity 1 year, 9 months ago

They're just running around like undisciplined little children, thumbing their noses at everything and everybody. That constant smirk on Kobach's face says it all.

And they're getting by with it.

voevoda 1 year, 9 months ago

"The cases would probably have to be outsourced." Aha! This is just a way to channel state money into the pockets of Kobach's private attorney friends. $825,000 of our tax money paid out to fat cat lawyers.

Keith 1 year, 9 months ago

It's sad so many people believe this paranoid clap-trap.

Keith 1 year, 9 months ago

Reality, it's not a secret. I don't pay attention to AM radio ranters, nor do I pay attention to MSNBC ranters. They don't have your best interests in mind, only their ratings and advertisers.

bad_dog 1 year, 9 months ago

"I get all my skinny on sites, such as this one." A site like many filled with facts, opinions and rubbish. The trick is in sorting it out, or at least caring enough to attempt to do so.

Greg Cooper 1 year, 9 months ago

You obviously have not paid attention to anything smacking of reality in your entire life, P, and your illogical, hateful, simjplicities are evidence of that.

However, you fit in quite well with the people who took the time to vote last election. Hope you all find help when the state goes down in flames from defending these stupid, illogical laws and the state coffers are empty from your side's idiotic tax "policy".

Have a nice day

PS: You've never been right about anything of this forum yet. That hasn't changed..

Kevin Haislip 1 year, 9 months ago

i wonder how we are going to vote them fools out ?

Katara 1 year, 9 months ago

"Rep. Ken Corbet, R-Topeka, said if he visits a doctor for a sore throat, why would the doctor ask about a firearm. "Why would that even have to come up?" he asked."

Well, the marks around your throat that look like someone, such as a spouse, tried to choke you might make the doctor wonder if there is something going on at the home to cause your sore throat.

Larry Sturm 1 year, 9 months ago

Who manifactures guns in Kansas who is going to chjeck everybody going out of state if they are carrying a banned gun?

dabbindan 1 year, 9 months ago

the conservatives think (i know, a bit of an oxymoron) they have themselves a perfectly good bicameral steamroller. it may have limited mileage. they might as well see if they can flatten as many objects as they can while they have it.

inquire 1 year, 9 months ago

Where did Rubin go to law school? What were his marks? He is a moron and I want to make sure none of my employees are from the same institution.

costello 1 year, 9 months ago

Why don't you do some simple research before you take a gratuitious slam? He got his J.D. from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis in 1973. http://www.johnrubin.net/htdocs/Biography.html

Another interesting tidbit: "He culminated an extremely distinguished and successful legal career with the Federal Government by serving for ten years as a Social Security Administrative Law Judge, a position from which he retired in 2004."

globehead 1 year, 9 months ago

I did a little research based upon your suggestion and the link you provided. It turns out his "distinguished and successful legal career" is the evaluation of his very own website. I assume his undergraduate work was in ego.

judgerubes 1 year, 9 months ago

I went to Washington University Law School in St. Louis, MO on a full scholarship. (Also admitted to Harvard Law School, among others.) Washington U. ranked at the time in the top 10 law schools in the country. I had the highest law boards in my class. Graduted in the top 10% of my class. After graduating from Boston College with an A.B. in Political Science magna cum laude. Subsequently admitted as a member of Mensa. Oh, and a National Merit Finalist out of high school. There's more, but I don't want to use up more of your valuable time. Any other questions? Signed, Rep. John J. Rubin (R-Shawnee)

jafs 1 year, 9 months ago

Well, he's right that the Supremacy Clause doesn't apply to unconstitutional laws. But, the US SC is the body charged with determining that, not the KS legislature.

Charles L Bloss Jr 1 year, 9 months ago

I am on medicare. My primary care physician asked me if I owned guns. I told her it was none of her business. She knows I not only own guns, but carry one most of the time. She told me it was a medicare requirement that she ask, and had I answered yes she showed me a slew of other questions I would have to answer. It was a lot of additional questions, so remember you are not required to answer the first question in the positive even if you do own guns. If you are dumb enough to truthfully answer it in the positive, be ready for medicare to ask you lots of additional questions. Been there, done that.

bad_dog 1 year, 9 months ago

Must have been traumatic, all those gun questions and lies to keep straightened out. I can only imagine the horrors one must endure...

It must inspire a great deal of confidence in your caregiver, knowing you're lying to them. Just as there's no requirement to answer truthfully, there's also no requirement for you to continue using Medicare what with all their Socialistic impositions upon you.

Joe Hyde 1 year, 9 months ago

Conservative Republicans must keep the state's gun lovers distracted and diverted by this anti-Obama crap for as long as possible. Because once Bubba feels the pain of the money whippin' conservatives have targeted him for, Bubba gonna get mad. And Obama ain't who Bubba's gonna get mad at, either.

oldbaldguy 1 year, 9 months ago

I know CW and he is right. I suspect the interstate commerce clause applies if Kansas made weapons are sold across state lines. Washburn has a good law school.

Greg Cooper 1 year, 9 months ago

I'll tell you why, autie.

Only by introducing and enacting these stupid, unconstitutional, useless laws can the bigwigs in the Koch Party keep their "power base" happy. They know that their ideology sucks, is not defensible, and is of no aid to the masses, so have to make up issues that only keep people from thinking of reality while focusing on stupidity like this.

There is a really strong aversion in many Kansans to thinking for themselves, for questioning those "in authority", and we have seen, and will continue to see, the steady decline of our state unless we can wake people up top this kind of back door politics.

And, by the way, this ain't a Republican issue, this is a money-based, greed-induced, self-centered issue.

Alyosha 1 year, 9 months ago

“The Supremacy Clause does not apply to federal laws, regulations or orders that are unconstitutional,” Rubin said.

Rubin fails to note that since Marbury v. Madison federal laws or regulations or orders are legally judged constitutional or unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court.

And then the point is moot as far as state law's go.

Helps to know how the Founders established this country, to avoid making silly statements like Rubins' and those of many commenters.

globehead 1 year, 9 months ago

Rubin is our resident idiot in Shawnee. His is the same kind of pandering puppet we see across the country in forward thinking hell holes like Texas. They run a state law up the flagpole leading folks to believe it will supercede federal law. I doesn't work to accomplish anything other than waste a monumental amount of time and the money we pay these morons.

“The Supremacy Clause does not apply to federal laws, regulations or orders that are unconstitutional,” Rubin said.

Mr. Rubin should read the entire Constitution. The Supreme Court is given the authority to determine this. His opinions have value in any Johnnie on the Job and that is about it. Of course he is entitled to his opinion. But, he absolutely does not have the authority to determine what is and is not constitutional...thank God and Justice John Marshall!

Shelley Bock 1 year, 9 months ago

The 2nd Amendment protects possession of weapons in the hands of the people in order to form the militia necessary for State (as in Kansas) security.

Article 1, Section 8, paragraph 17, indicates that the Congress is "to provide for the organizing, arming and disciplining of the Militia".

Although one might try to distinguish this as being the National Guard rather than the "militia", seems that Congress can establish rules to for control of the militia which supersede state law regarding the right of the people to bear arms.

I would posit that any state official who challenges the authority of federal officials suffers the potential for a rude awakening, a potentially embarrassing and costly act, if relying on a flawed belief that Federal agents are operating on an unconstitutional law.

Any state official who values their liberty would be wise to avoid such a confrontation on the basis of flimsy state law overriding Federal law.

As the learned Mr. T of the A-Team would say "Fool".

fuel_for_the_fire 1 year, 9 months ago

Lynn371: Your doctor lied to you. Doctors are not required to ask Medicare patients about gun ownership. Many doctors will ask about gun ownership but it is NOT a requirement to ask this question of patients who receive their health insurance from the government (i.e., Medicare). You should consider changing primary care physicians to one who doesn't lie.

Shelley Bock 1 year, 9 months ago

Or, Lynn371 wasn't listening to the question.

fuel_for_the_fire 1 year, 9 months ago

I considered the possibility that Lynn371 was distorting the truth but since I couldn't prove it with undeniable fact, I chose to respond with facts that I could prove. I know, I know, it's not really a popular way of doing things these days....I guess I'm just old-fashioned.

globehead 1 year, 9 months ago

Lynn371: "I am on medicare. My primary care physician asked me if I owned guns."

Perhaps the exam was not for a physical ailment. One can only speculate.

costello 1 year, 9 months ago

"Under the bill, federal authorities trying to enforce any kind of rule on such a firearm would face possible prison time."

ROTFL!!!

Liberty275 1 year, 9 months ago

I really like these state's rights issues being pressed by states writing legislation in spite of federal law. Now you might think this is a waste of time, but if it prevents Kansas law enforcement from assisting the feds then it will have the desired effect of helping to keep the federal government out of state business.

We have major state's rights issues in America right now, and the more states that push back at federal rule pushes the final result towards state's rights.

On a side note, how many of you that think this law is a waste of time think the same of marijuana laws legalizing a federally illegal substance in several states or states that have passed assisted suicide laws despite federal law.?

jafs 1 year, 9 months ago

If KS law enforcement fails to co-operate with feds, I imagine they'll be hit with obstruction charges.

For almost as long as we've existed, it's been the US SC that decides whether or not laws are unconstitutional, not individual states.

As far as the other issues go, I'm not sure. It does seem to me that the rationale for the feds prosecuting marijuana use in individual states rests on a very overly broad interpretation of the commerce clause. But the remedy for that would be the SC.

Or, of course, we could elect people that would change the laws at the federal level.

Individual states attempting to subvert the federal government is rather a waste of time and energy.

In_God_we_trust 1 year, 9 months ago

I like the bill, and can see it is a reaction to a federal government intrusion and overstepping of power on the 2nd amendment. Kansas government understands what the 2nd amendment is supposed to limit, not the people, but the government. That is why the Bill of Rights is there, to put limits on the Federal government power in these areas. The Supreme Court statements on rights is in error, not being based on the Constitution or it's intent and attempts to open the door to legislate limitations against the Bill of Rights, thereby making unconstitutional laws, which are no laws. The Kansas bill is in line with and supports the people's rights, using legislation to protect and support the people's rights, stated in the Bill of Rights and the Kansas Constitution.

In_God_we_trust 1 year, 9 months ago

@Agnostick,

Try reading the Bible, it can change your life for the better, forever. Within it is the power of God and His Word, to save your soul and spirit from the destruction that was made for the devil and his angels (not people who are saved through faith in the Son of God). Jesus (the Son of God) already paid the penalty for your sins when he became a living sacrifice on the cross for your sins, so you can be made free from the power and nature of sin and live towards God in righteousness (right standing with God, no longer at war with God). Jesus was raised from the dead, back to life, on the third day while in the grave, by the power of God the Father, and lives for ever more. Because He lives, you can live too. I encourage you to take the time to learn about what Jesus did for you and what He can teach you. Read it and have God's Word change your future for the better.

lucky_guy 1 year, 9 months ago

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Liberty275 1 year, 9 months ago

"Liberty275 remember it was States' rights that was the driver for Jim Crow and lynching."

Lynching and Jim Crow laws were long ago deemed unconstitutional. They are red herrings.

"These type of statements spoken anywhere else would be considered treason."

""No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government"

-- Thomas Jefferson"

"Besides what intrusions are you so worked up about?"

All of them.

"hold something besides your gun for a while, you'll feel better."

I only have a BB gun.

globehead 1 year, 9 months ago

Yep! Thomas said that. But. it was never clear that he was speaking of officials who were elected. Clearly, ol' King George was not. I've always marveled that the 2nd amendment was used to give us the right to protect property or whatever and little to no mention is ever made of that "well regulated militia" part. That's what it says. The Constitution clearly does say the President may call up that militia to quell disturbances foreign or domestic. This leads one to the conclusion that this seeming paradox allows the President, if elected, to call up the very militia that some suggest is there to remove him. The law of the land is what the Constitution says, a document which Jefferson had no hand in writing by the way.

jafs 1 year, 9 months ago

And they were deemed unconstitutional by the SC, not an individual state.

It's a recipe for disaster to allow each state to interpret the federal constitution however it likes.

progressive_thinker 1 year, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

fuel_for_the_fire 1 year, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

fuel_for_the_fire 1 year, 9 months ago

It is a well known fact that Viagra is used to treat pulminary arterial hypertension. And I don't care what you say...lucky_guy's line is still one of funniest things I've heard in a while.

tomatogrower 1 year, 9 months ago

They don't want to follow any federal regulations, but they want federal money. Kansas is one of the states that get more federal money than they pay in. What's going to happen to all those people who work at the Kansas forts when the Republicans let the sequester kick in. There won't be any money for people to buy things, and the sales tax that Brownnose thinks will save his behind will drop. What a laugh.

Tom Huyser 1 year, 9 months ago

Just an observation after reading these posts. I grew up in Lawrence and loved the life I had there. The diverse population, because of KU made it a quirky, interesting place to live, and many times Ive have thought about moving back. Through out my life since leaving I have encounter several people from other parts of Kansas, and whenever I mentioned I was from Lawrence, I got a cold response. I heard phrases like "snob hill", "wackos" and such, and THOSE were the nicer terms for the people of Lawrence. I could never understand everyones disdane for our great town/city. After reading these posts, and many other posts on the site I have begun to see what the others in the state see. When confronted with a conservative opinion they dont agree with, so many on this site resort to personal attacks questioning the mentality and intelligence of the person. Seldom is the response about the opinion, or even a rebuttle of the that opinion, too often its down to just ridicule of the person. When a minority of the population try to control the majority, and spend way too much time insulting them, after a while the majority usually just ignores them or look at the as so many in Kansas look at the residence of Lawrence. I'm pretty sure that this posting will result in the just very insults and ridicule I had mentioned.

Armstrong 1 year, 9 months ago

but...but...but... if this goes away the dismal job he is ( or is not ) doing will be thrust back into the spotlight. Benghazi, Carbon tax, wealth redistribution.... could come back to haunt him.

globehead 1 year, 9 months ago

...not to mention health care for needy & ending a war he inherited which was initiated via ginned up propaganda.

Armstrong 1 year, 9 months ago

Lol - you mean you really want to go down the impending health care debacle road?

ksjayhawk74 1 year, 9 months ago

So they want the Sate of Kansas to protect criminals from Federal prosecution for the crimes they commit involving guns?

Great plan. Criminals, Kansas is the place to commit crimes.

judgerubes 1 year, 9 months ago

Since you asked: I went to Washington University Law School in St. Louis, MO on a full scholarship. (Also admitted to Harvard Law School, among others.) Washington U. ranked at the time in the top 10 law schools in the country. I had the highest law boards in my class. Graduated in the top 10% of my class. Previously graduated from Boston College with an A.B. in Political Science magna cum laude. Subsequently admitted as a member of Mensa. Oh, and a National Merit Finalist out of high school. Former U.S. Administrative Law Judge. Former FDIC Regional Counsel. Former Assistant Regional Counsel for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Graduated first in my class from the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, GA. There's more, but I don't want to use up more of your valuable time. Any other questions? Signed, Rep. John J. Rubin (R-Shawnee)

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