Home » Rep. Andrew Clyde whined about federal rules for crime-connected gun dealers. Guess what?

Rep. Andrew Clyde whined about federal rules for crime-connected gun dealers. Guess what?

The New York Times has a little mini-scoop about Rep. Andrew Clyde of Georgia, the House Republican known to most of the country because of C-SPAN coverage from Jan. 6 showing him screaming in panic as armed Capitol security forces tried to hold the doors to the House floor. Days after his personal bacon had been saved, Clyde insisted the violent insurrectionists responsible for multiple deaths behaved no differently than people on a “normal tourist visit.”

Back in April, Clyde had an unusually specific bone to pick with Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Director Steven Dettelbach. During a subcommittee hearing, Clyde complained about Demand 2, a program that puts gun dealers under enhanced federal monitoring if an unusual number of the guns they’ve sold are later used in crimes.

What Clyde didn’t see fit to mention back then is that he is one of the very few gun dealers in the country to get nailed by the program because it’s one of his gun stores that is subject to that enhanced monitoring after selling too many guns later linked to crimes. The Times reports that records obtained through the Freedom of Information Act by gun safety organization Brady show that Clyde Armory in Athens, Georgia, was placed under monitoring in 2020 and in 2021 because as it turns out, Clyde Armory has had over two dozen of their guns later be traced to crimes. That ain’t normal.

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So when Clyde was fuming in a congressional subcommittee hearing over the supposedly onerous requirements of Demand 2, he wasn’t so much sticking up for America’s gun dealers as he was sticking up for the profit margins of his own high-volume gun-selling business. He doesn’t want his store to have to comply with enhanced federal oversight.

Oh, Clyde. Clyde, Clyde, Clyde.

To be fair to Clyde, what he’s doing here isn’t the slightest bit unusual. It would seem that a good chunk of senators and House members got themselves elected primarily out of a desire to seek vengeance for laws and regulations that hurt their own personal business interests, and screw what the rest of America might want. Sen. Joe Manchin’s energy policies seem to revolve exclusively around keeping the Manchin family’s coal business alive. Clyde here ran because he owns a pair of gun stores and absolutely does not want to fill out slightly more paperwork simply for the sake of other people’s right not to be murdered.

If I’m recalling correctly, Rep. Lauren Boebert ran for Congress to back her legitimate business rights to give customers both COVID and food poisoning. Because America, of course. And you do not want to know what inspired Rep. Matt Gaetz to seek out the chance to rewrite certain federal laws—trust me, you just don’t.

The dynamic here isn’t one that attracts the best people to office, it’s one that attracts people who want the power to make their own personal cash cows put out just a bit more milk, and that way lies madness. Is the nation at some point going to get a president who takes the job solely because he’s got a new hotel opening up near the White House and he wants to boost traffic to it? Or just because he’s got a bevy of exclusive golf resorts and he wants to boost foreign interest in them? Or because he’s got about 100,000 plastic bottles of unsold self-branded water to get rid of and no venues for doing it? Or because—

Everyone always talks about redistricting, but what is it like to actually do it? Oregon political consultant Kari Chisholm joins us on this week’s episode of “The Downballot” to discuss his experience as member of Portland’s new Independent District Commission, a panel of citizens tasked with creating the city’s first-ever map for its city council. Kari explains why Portland wanted to switch from at-large elections to a district-based system, how new multimember districts could boost diversity on the council, and the commission’s surprisingly effective efforts to divide the city into four equal districts while heeding community input.


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