United States Attorney Preet Bharara feels emboldened, sources say, following the conviction of former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver — on all of seven corruption charges. Despite lacking a “smoking gun” to constitute an explicit quid pro quo, the jury handed Bharara a sweeping win. Such is the public’s appetite for corrupt politicians, observers say.
Three sources are confirming that Bharara intends to indict Governor Andrew Cuomo on January 2nd — along with a half dozen associates and former staffers — on public corruption, racketeering, conspiracy, and honest services fraud.
The Chronicle is unable to confirm widespread rumors that the former staffers are Howard Glaser, Joe Percoco and Larry Schwartz.
Glaser resigned in June of last year as Director of State Operations and was thought to be Cuomo’s top aide. Percoco left a $175,000 job with the Governor on October 25th of this year, and was known as Cuomo’s “political enforcer.”
Schwartz was caught up in the Moreland Commission scandal. He is thought to be guilty of obstruction of justice for actions he took in the hours immediately following Bharara’s confiscation of Moreland Commission documents.
One of the three sources — a longtime Albany insider — says that there are at least three additional targets of the investigation, including Alain Kaloyeros, the head of SUNY Polytech who, at $800,000, is the highest paid state employee.
The other two men are said to be from Buffalo and have been “involved in the Administration’s economic development deals in particularly unseemly ways,” but the source would not elaborate.
SOURCE :: Buffalo Chronicle
ALBANY – We’re No. 1 – in corruption. No other state has more legislators forced out of office by ethical or criminal issues than New York, according to a study released on Monday.
In fact, the state set a national record for the number of lawmakers kicked out, or chased out of office since, 2012, the Center for Public Integrity, a good government group, found in a new study.
We’re talking about a gold medal-winning corruption performance by New York.
– John Kaehny, executive director of Reinvent Albany
The tally of 14 lawmakers does not include former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who is on trial for corruption, or his counterpart in the state Senate, former Majority Leader Dean Skelos, whose trial is scheduled for later this month.
The reported noted that Skelos is the fifth straight Senate leader to be charged with using his office illegally for personal gain.
Overall, the state received a grade of D Minus and ranked 30th in the nation — tied with Florida — for measures it has put in place for transparency and accountability.
“We’re talking about a gold medal-winning corruption performance by New York,” said John Kaehny, executive director Reinvent Albany, an advocacy group. “It’s a pretty bleak moment for public governance.”
Albany’s secretive budgeting process, commonly referred to as “three men in a room,” landed it dead last in the budgeting category, with a grade of F.
Nevertheless, the Empire State fared better than other states. Eleven received the lowest grade of F.
Alaska walked off with the highest overall grade, but that was just a C.
Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s independent audits earned a B+, highest in the nation in that category, helping lift the state from its dismal rating of 37th in 2012, which was the last time the survey was conducted.
The report said that DiNapoli’s office is effective “because of its robustly-funded” office, “which is headed by an elected official who is largely protected from interference by the governor or Legislature.”
“The office issues an annual report, which is publicly available and has shown little hesitation to go after state agencies, such as in a recent audit that identified $500 million in waste in the state’s Medicaid program,” the study said.
The study measured 245 “indicators” divided into 13 categories: public access to information, political financing, electoral oversight, executive accountability, legislative accountability, judicial accountability, state budget processes, state civil service management, procurement, internal auditing, lobbying disclosure, state pension fund management and ethics enforcement agencies.
SOURCE :: NYPost.com
TL;DR… What a smug asshole.
“Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld what we have long known to be true – that the core provisions of the NY SAFE Act do not violate the Second Amendment. Today, common sense prevailed.
“When we passed the SAFE Act, just days after the tragedies in Newtown and Webster, New York proved to the nation that it is possible to enact sensible gun control that coexists with the Second Amendment. We showed that it can be done with bi-partisan support from both urban and rural communities. And we took a fundamental step forward to help end the stream of senseless killings by keeping guns out of the hands of criminals and the dangerously mentally ill.
“This case validates a simple, fundamental truth about gun control: that it is possible to have strong laws that keep our communities safe, while at the same time respecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners. New York has set the example – and it’s far past time for Washington to follow suit and pass a sensible national gun control policy.”
SOURCE :: NYS Governor Website
We hold that the core provisions of the New York and Connecticut laws prohibiting possession of semiautomatic assault weapons and large‐capacity magazines do not violate the Second Amendment, and that the challenged individual provisions are not void for vagueness. The particular provision of New York’s law regulating load limits, however, does not survive the requisite scrutiny. One further specific provision—Connecticut’s prohibition on the non‐semiautomatic Remington 7615—unconstitutionally infringes upon the Second Amendment right. Accordingly, we AFFIRM in part the judgment of the District Court for the District of Connecticut insofar as it upheld the prohibition of semiautomatic assault weapons and large‐capacity magazines, and REVERSE in part its holding with respect to the Remington 7615. With respect to Case 14-36, Document 330-1, 10/19/2015, 1621732, Page5 of 57 the judgment of the District Court for the Western District of New York, we REVERSE in part certain vagueness holdings, and we otherwise AFFIRM that judgment insofar as it upheld the prohibition of semiautomatic assault weapons and large‐capacity magazines and invalidated the load limit.
Read the full NYSRAP vs Cuomo OPINION 10192015.
SOURCE :: Paloma A. Capanna, Law and Policy
In an opinion piece published by a major news outlet Monday, Moms Demand Acton founder Shannon Watts used recent events in Tennessee and South Carolina to push new gun control measures.
The 950 word piece for CNN entitled, “Did gun law loopholes enable Charleston and Chattanooga?” attributed to Watts, devotes most of its text to chronicling the Bloomberg-backed Moms group’s campaign against Cabela’s to close the so-called “Charleston Loophole” before turning to the recent terrorist attack that left five U.S. service members dead at a military installation in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
“We’re still learning the facts about what happened in Chattanooga, however, recent media reports indicate the gunman took advantage of the online gun sale loophole and purchased at least one of his firearms where he knew he could buy a gun with no background check, no questions asked,” Watts wrote.
The purchase cited by Watts stems from a July 18 Reuters story, which reported that friends of the suspected Chattanooga gunman, Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez, purchased an AK-74, Saiga 12-gauge shotgun and an AR-15 via the online gun classifieds site Armslist.com.
Everytown for Gun Safety President John Feinblatt followed this up with a statement to Guns.com from his New York office Tuesday, saying, “In the last month we have seen two tragedies in Charleston and Chattanooga that highlight the loopholes that make it easy for dangerous people to get guns – loopholes that the NRA put in place and has fought to preserve.”
Fineblatt elaborated by decrying how easy it is for dangerous people to take advantage of the “online sales loophole” to buy guns.
For its part, Armslist informs sellers that he or she is responsible for obeying federal and state laws before finalizing a transaction, and directs sellers to contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for any questions.
Further, a panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit recently held that Armslist was not liable for a gun sold through its platform which was later used in a murder.
However, to cite that Tennessee – or any other state – guidelines for mandated background checks for private gun transfers would have prevented Abdulazeez from obtaining his guns may be a stretch as nothing disclosed by authorities thus far would seem to have prevented the 24-year-old from passing a background check for a firearm purchased over the counter from a licensed dealer.
Watts herself closes her piece with language that dismisses hyperbole in the debate of blame, but still seemingly defends citing the recent mass killings as reason to seek change in the nation’s gun laws and policies, even if the changes sought would not have prevented the very killings used to justify them.
“After tragedies such as Charleston and Chattanooga, as the details unfold about how something so horrible happened, it’s easy to fall into the trap of hypotheticals – the what if we had done something differently,” wrote Watts. “The truth is we cannot change the past, but we can demand a safer tomorrow.”
SOURCE :: GUNS.COM
We need more of these types of Sheriff’s in NY….
Oregon – -(Ammoland.com)- The latest numbers are in from the State Police, and they once again prove what a massive fraud the background check system is and how much worse things will get when SB 941’s firearms transfer provisions kick in in early August.
While 129 transactions were denied in June (including 95 “felons”, 13 people actively “wanted”and 5 adjudicated mentally ill) the number of arrests was a bit smaller.
Of those 13 people actually “wanted” at the time of their denial exactly 1 was arrested. Of the 5 mentally ill people and 95 felons, the number of arrests was a whopping … zero.
So once again, we see the sham that the anti-gunners numbers are. Virtually no one is prevented from getting a firearm because of background checks. They are just diverted from that gun at that time and place. But soon this ridiculous system is going to be used against you for transfers that now don’t require the failed intervention of the Oregon State Police. Keep in mind, the OSP still has a policy of taking a trooper off patrol for every firearm’s transfer denial. What a tragic waste of scarce resources.
Maybe because this system is proving itself each day to be a joke (the shooter in the Charleston murders passed a background check) more and more sheriffs are making it clear they will not enforce the new registration, universal background check bill.
Last Saturday at a firearms event sponsored by the Josephine County Republicans with Rich Wyatt, the new sheriff of the county stated unequivocally that neither he nor his deputies would enforce SB 941. Sheriff Dave Daniel called SB 941 a “waste of time” and a “travesty.”
We will keep working to expose the fraud that SB 941 is. The fight is not over.
About Oregon Firearms Federation:
The Oregon Firearms Federation has proven itself to be Oregon’s only no compromise lobbying group, OFF takes the same tough stands and serves as a vehicle for educating gun owners, promoting their rights and when necessary, fighting the freedom haters in court. Visit: www.oregonfirearms.org
SOURCE :: AMMOLAND
Senators from Illinois and New York are making a bid to bring back legislation that would make selling guns to a prohibited possessor worth 20 years in federal prison.
The proposal, to be filed this week in Washington, is sponsored by U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY, and co-sponsored by Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill. It is a repeat of a failed bid last session to make gun trafficking a crime.
The earlier attempt by the same two lawmakers, the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2013, never made it out of committee but Gillibrand is more hopeful this time around.
“I am not willing to throw my hands in the air and say nothing can be done while lives are being senselessly lost due to weapons being in the hands of criminals,” Gillibrand told the New York Daily News. “We all have a moral obligation to make our voices heard and say enough is enough.”
The new bill, termed the Hadiya Pendleton and Nyasia Pryear-Yard Gun Trafficking and Crime Prevention Act of 2015, is named after two teens killed in New York with guns traced to out-of-state origins.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has agreed to change a part of the SAFE Act that pertains to the Ammunition background check database. According to Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I, Oneonta), the senate republican majority has secured a legally binding memorandum of understanding (MUC) with the governor’s office amending provisions of the NYS SAFE Act.
“This is a clear victory for Second Amendment rights in New York,” said Senator Seward. “While I will continue to work for full repeal of the poorly crafted, over-reaching NY-SAFE Act, this is a significant accomplishment – and constitutes the only modifications that have been made to this law since it was enacted two years ago over my objection.”
The MOU signed by New York State Director of Operations James Malatras and Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan suspends a portion of the NY-SAFE Act establishing a statewide database requiring purchasers of ammunition to undergo a background check.
“The plan to establish a statewide ammunition database has been fraught with problems since it was first conceived, not to mention it infringes on the rights of lawful firearm owners. I successfully helped shut off funding that was being wasted on trying to establish this database and am extremely pleased that the entire idea will now be abandoned,” Seward added.
Along with leading the effort to repeal the NY-SAFE Act, Senator Seward has also blocked other gun control measures advanced by the state assembly and senate Democrats such as microstamping, mandatory liability insurance for firearm owners, and a ban on .50 caliber firearms, which would include many hunting calibers.
Earlier this year legislation (S.5837) sponsored by Senator Seward, amending several of the most onerous sections of the NY-SAFE Act, received senate approval. This was the first time any bill amending the NY-SAFE Act was acted upon by the legislature. The state assembly failed to even bring the bill forward for a vote.
“The state senate took the lead and passed legislation that would erase some of the most burdensome provisions of the NY-SAFE Act while also keeping other gun control laws at bay. While the state assembly failed to join us, the senate Republican majority continued to work to restore Second Amendment rights to lawful firearm owners,” Seward concluded.
In her standard stump speech, Hillary Rodham Clinton talks about fighting income inequality, celebrating court rulings on gay marriage and health care, and, since the Emanuel AME Church massacre, toughening the nation’s gun laws.
That last component marks an important evolution in presidential politics. For at least the past several decades, Democrats seeking national office have often been timid on the issue of guns for fear of alienating firearms owners. In 2008, after Barack Obama took heat for his gaffe about people who “cling to guns or religion,” he rarely mentioned guns again — neither that year nor in his 2012 reelection campaign.
But in a sign that the political environment on guns has shifted in the wake of recent mass shootings — and of Clinton’s determination to stake out liberal ground in her primary race against insurgent Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) — Clinton is not only initiating a debate about gun control but also vowing to fight the National Rifle Association.
“I’m going to speak out against the uncontrollable use of guns in our country because I believe we can do better,” Clinton said Tuesday in Iowa City.
“It is illegal to bring a gun across state lines, and yet it happens all the time, and I don’t understand why the federal government is not doing far more to prevent that.”
From the NRA Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms: (found here)
“A provision of the federal law known as the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act, or FOPA, protects those who are transporting firearms for lawful purposes from local restrictions which would otherwise prohibit passage.
Under FOPA, notwithstanding any state or local law, a person is entitled to transport a firearm from any place where he or she may lawfully possess and carry such firearm to any other place where he or she may lawfully possess and carry it, if the firearm is unloaded and locked out of reach. In vehicles without a trunk, the unloaded firearm must be in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console. Ammunition that is either locked out of reach in the trunk or in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console is also covered.
Travelers should be aware that some state and local governments treat this federal provision as an “affirmative defense” that may only be raised after an arrest. All travelers in areas with restrictive laws would be well advised to have copies of any applicable firearm licenses or permits, as well as copies or printouts from the relevant jurisdictions’ official publications or websites documenting pertinent provisions of law (including FOPA itself) or reciprocity information. In the event of an unexpected or extended delay, travelers should make every effort not to handle any luggage containing firearms unnecessarily and to secure it in a location where they do not have ready access to it.”
It seems New York state’s Mr Pataki needs to sit down with his handlers and bone up on the basic laws surrounding lawful gun ownership before he ‘shoots from the hip’ to the rest of middle America in his quest to be the next Republican president.
SOURCE :: AMMOLAND
Governor Cuomo will be in Rochester today, July 9th, for a special event for local lawmakers, dubbed “Capital for a Day.” This “day-long” event is a chance for local lawmakers to meet with the governor and other senior state officials to “advance local priorities for growth and improvements in the community.” Additionally, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will be in attendance.
What are the chances that they’ll invite me to these meetings to discuss firearms policies in New York?!
He said this in response to Tapper’s question about Sanders’s vote for the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). That act protects gun manufacturers from lawsuits tied to the misuse of their products. It was signed into law by President George W. Bush in October 2005.
Tapper said to Sanders, “Your Democrat rivals are starting to hit you with the fact that you have in the past sided with the NRA on some gun issues.” He then referenced the dismissal of the lawsuit against ammo retailer Lucky Gunner—a retailer from whom Aurora shooting suspect James Holmes allegedly bought ammo and other supplies.
Tapper explained that the suit against Lucky Gunner quickly fizzled out and was dismissed because of PLCAA.
Then Tapper asked Sanders to explain why he voted for PLCAA?
Sanders responded by first explaining that the NRA has opposed him in “virtually every campaign” he’s been in. And he tossed out his gun control bona fides—”I voted to ban semi-automatic assault weapons, I voted to make sure that there’s an instant background check, I voted to make sure that guns do not get into the hands of people who should not have them by doing away with the loophole exists in the gun show legislation.”
Then he explained why he opposes frivolous lawsuits against gun makers:
Now… if somebody has a gun, and it falls into the hands of a murderer, and that murderer kills somebody with the gun, do you hold the gun manufacturer responsible? Not any more than you would hold a hammer company responsible if somebody beats somebody over the head with a hammer. That is not what a lawsuit should be about.
Sanders went on to say “99.9 percent” of gun owners “obey the law,” and no progress is going to made on gun control until “extreme positions” are abandoned.
Sanders did not address his own conundrum—if “99.9 percent” of gun owners are law-abiding, why do we need more gun control? Why not instead practice criminal control of the .1 percent of gun owners whom Sanders sees as problematic?
SOURCE :: Breitbart
New York, NY – -(Ammoland.com)- Hello Mr Trump. Many of our readers are very excited that you have thrown your hat in the ring to run for president in 2106.
They like the idea that you have nothing to do with politics and that you have real experience running large, successful business, successful being the key word. I hope you and your family are up for the challenges of running for president.
AmmoLand: Speaking of family I know you and your sons recently attended the 2015 NRA Annual Meeting, where you were asked to speak. How long have you been active with the NRA and what do you think about the influence the NRA has in politics?
“I am a Life Member of the NRA and am proud of their service in protecting our right to keep and bear arms. The NRA’s efforts to stop dangerous, gun-banning legislation and regulation is invaluable. The media focus on those efforts overshadows the great work the NRA does on behalf of safety and conservation.
I have a permit to carry and, living in New York, I know firsthand the challenges law-abiding citizens have in exercising their Second Amendment rights. My most trusted sources are my sons, Don, Jr. and Eric. They are fantastic sportsmen and are deeply involved in hunting, competitive shooting, and habitat conservation.”
AmmoLand: The deceptive term “Assault Weapons” has proven to be a buzz word among the anti-gun media. Back in 2000 in your book “The America We Deserve” you wrote “The Republicans walk the NRA line and refuse to even limited restrictions. I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I also support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun.” Since that time the AR15 rifle, what the media calls an “assault weapons“, has become America’s most popular firearm with millions and millions of them owned by good people.
Do you still stand by this quote or has your thinking evolved over the 15 years since you wrote that line?
“I certainly stand by my opposition to Gun Control when it comes to taking guns from law-abiding citizens. You mention that the media describes the AR-15 as an “assault rifle,” which is one example of the many distortions they use to sell their agenda. However, the AR-15 does not fall under this category. Gun-banners are unfortunately preoccupied with the AR-15, magazine capacity, grips, and other aesthetics, precisely because of its popularity.”
“To the Left every gun is an assault weapon.”
“Gun control does not reduce crime. It has consistently failed to stop violence. Americans are entitled to protect their families, their property and themselves. In fact, in right-to-carry states the violent crime rate is 24% lower than the rest of the United States and the murder rate is 28% lower. This should not be up for debate.”
AmmoLand: You have been a long time resident of New York City and we can only assume that you know former Mayor Michael Bloomberg pretty well. We have followed his efforts to undermine the Second Amendment through his various anti-gun front groups. What does he have against the RKBA and why don’t we see wealthy conservatives making a similar ‘all in’ push to support gun rights?
“Mayor Bloomberg and I are friends. However, on this we agree to disagree. I believe there are two reasons you do not see a similar effort from Mayor Bloomberg’s polar opposite. ”
“First, many wealthy live behind gates, armed security, and away from crime. They may have little understanding of how fellow citizens are challenged in defending themselves and their property. The second reason is that we have the NRA and other groups already in the arena.”
“The Trump family knows these organizations are the best investment if we are to defend the right to keep and bear arms.”
AmmoLand: Karl Rove recently voiced support for a repeal of the Second Amendment as a way to stop gun violence. What do you think of this suggestion or, as our readers believe, is it a God given right that can not be repealed by politicians?
“Karl Rove is a proven loser. He wasted $400 million in 2012 and did not win a single race.
“The Second Amendment is a bedrock natural right of the individual to defend self, family, and property. It is a ridiculous notion to ever repeal it.”
“For Rove to even think it shows a lack of respect for all of the freedoms in our Constitution and a complete ignorance of our shared American inheritance.”
AmmoLand: As we have reported on AmmoLand Shooting Sports News, two of your sons, Eric and Donald Trump Jr., have been the target of harassment by anti-hunting groups after they posted pictures of their successes while hunting in Africa. What advice do you have for other hunters that maybe be being bullied online or elsewhere by this shrill minority?
“My advice is to remain vigilant. Harassment of this nature will always be with us, but we know that Americans have inherited a strong outdoor and shooting heritage that we are happy to defend.”
“The 2nd Amendment is right, not a privilege. The small minority of anti-everything activists may be vocal, but we have facts, and the Constitution, on our side.”
“I would also add that hunters contribute more to the preservation of game animals and their habitat than any of these protesters. Hunters are the original conservationists. To see this historically you have to look no further then Teddy Roosevelt and his creation of the National Parks System.”
AmmoLand: Universal Background Checks to acquire guns is something President Obama has long been pushing for, yet background checks would not or did not stop any of the recent shooters from getting guns. What is your position on Background Checks? And do you see a need for even more government approval for someone to own a gun?
“I do not support expanding background checks. The current background checks do not work.”
“They make it more difficult for law abiding citizens to acquire firearms while consistently failing to stop criminals from getting guns. We should re-examine our policy to make sure that these prohibitions do not impede law abiding citizens from exercising their Second Amendment rights.”
AmmoLand: A lot of Democrats in politics today are crying for firearms magazine restrictions. But as we saw just with the Charleston, S.C. church killer, he used standard capacity magazines and quickly changed them out five or more times. So how does it make any sense to have gun magazine size limits?
“Gun magazine limits do not make common sense. I have long opposed such limits. For instance, I fought the SAFE Act in New York, which I call the “Unsafe Act.” I also spoke at a rally in Albany championing gun rights and protesting the Unsafe Act. The law limited capacity to seven rounds, as if criminals were going to take rounds out of their magazines before committing a crime. It was later changed to a limit of ten rounds, but the entire episode was a complete disaster.”
“Never mindful of the results, this effort was just one more attempt to erode the Second Amendment.”
AmmoLand: Lots of AmmoLand’s active duty readers have complained that many, if not all, of our military bases are “Gun Free Zones” and that these highly trained war fighters are left defenseless and disarmed against murderers, like the Fort Hood Shooter, when they are stationed on U.S. bases. Would you have a problem allowing our military bases to set their own polices with regard to personal weapons and do away with the “Gun Free Zones” death trap?
“[gun free zones] No, not optional. As Commander-in-Chief, I would mandate that soldiers remain armed and on alert at our military bases.
President Clinton never should have passed a ban on soldiers being able to protect themselves on bases. America’s Armed Forces will be armed.
They will be able to defend themselves against terrorists. Our brave soldiers should not be at risk because of policy created by civilian leadership. Political correctness has no place in this debate.”
AmmoLand: Thank you for taking the time to answer some of our questions today. We wish you the best of luck in your presidential run. As we leave you would you like to tell our readers what the Second Amendment means to you and your family?
“The Trump family will stay vigilant in our support of right to keep and bear arms. And given today’s threats across the United States it is as important now as ever. National Security begins in our homes. All citizens must have the ability to protect themselves, their families, and their property. The Second Amendment is a right, not a privilege. Our safety and defense is embodied in the Second Amendment and I will always protect this most important right.
“Our country is ready for a bold new direction. We can bring common sense to Washington. This is our time to Make America Great Again!”
SOURCE :: AMMOLAND