Sens. Moran, Baucus and Inhofe oppose U.N. Arms Trade Treaty

Jerry Moran

Jerry Moran

U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) announced Sunday that the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty undermines Constitutional freedoms to bear arms and should not be ratified by the Senate.

The U.N. General Assembly passed a vote to ratify a U.N. ATT by majority-rule, as opposed to the original regulation for consensus. Moran, along with cosponsors Baucus and Inhofe, formed S. Con. Res. 7 in response to the U.N. ATT to uphold the second amendment of the U.S. and to protect American gun owners.

“The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty that passed in the General Assembly today would require the United States to implement gun-control legislation as required by the treaty, which could supersede the laws our elected officials have already put into place,” Inhofe said. “Recently, 53 Senators went on the record voting in favor of my amendment to stop the State Department from negotiating this treaty… I will continue to work with my colleagues Sens. Moran, Baucus and others to ensure the American people’s voices are heard and that this treaty is not ratified.”

S. Con. Res. 7 is a bipartisan resolution that outlines specific conditions which must be met in order for a U.N. ATT to be ratified and recognized as customary international law by the U.S. Senate. The resolution is cosponsored by 33 U.S. Senators.

“The passage of a treaty that Iran, Syria, and North Korea have made clear they have no intention of abiding by will only serve to constrain law-abiding democracies like the United States,” Moran said. “The U.S. Senate is united in strong opposition to a treaty that puts us on level ground with dictatorships who abuse human rights and arms terrorists, but there is real concern that the Administration feels pressured to sign a treaty that violates our Constitutional rights. Given the apparent support of the Obama Administration for the ATT, members of the U.S. Senate must continue to make clear that any treaty that violates our Second Amendment freedoms will be an absolute nonstarter for ratification.”

The treaty was sent to the General Assembly for a majority vote in haste, and the Administration reportedly disregarded its previous push for overall consensus.

“Consensus is needed to ensure that all countries can be held to standards that will actually improve the global situation by denying arms to those who would abuse them and to avoid loopholes in the Treaty that can be exploited by those wishing to export arms irresponsibly,” the U.S. Department of State said previously in a June 2010 Arms Trade Treaty document.

Last July, the Conference on the ATT did not result in a treaty text, due to a lack of consensus. The U.S. delegation asked for additional time after receiving a letter from Moran and 50 other Senators expressing their intent to oppose the treaty. President Obama’s administration announced its intent to reopen communication for treaty negotiation on November 7, 2012, resulting in the treaty’s passage vote in the U.N. General Assembly Sunday.

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