Bill C-71 passed its third and final vote in the Canadian Senate today as the governing Liberal Party’s new law to criminalize hunters, farmers and sport shooters and take away their guns.
Senators voted 55 in favour and 33 against, with 2 abstentions starting at 5:34 p.m. in Ottawa. Pro-Liberal members supported the bill. The Conservative Party opposition voted against.
Hostile Political Force
Bill C-71 solidifies the Liberals and their supporters as the most hostile and aggressive political force against the millions of Canadian men, women and youth who own or use firearms safely and responsibly.
The Senate didn’t change a comma from the draft text sent by the Liberal-controlled House of Commons, after eight months of deliberation and 30 hours of testimony from 81 expert witnesses.
The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau proposed Bill C-71 on March 20, 2018.
“Very disappointed that Trudeau’s ‘independent’ senators chose to rubber stamp Bill #C71,” Senator Don Plett, the Conservative who led opposition to the bill, said on Twitter after the vote. “No amendments, no improvements, no sober second thought.”
The Governor General will give her ceremonial Royal Assent in hours or days to turn the text into law.
Many gun owners are working to defeat the Liberal Party in the October election to restore respect, dignity and rights for honest Canadian hunters, farmers, sport shooters and gun collectors.
They view Bill C-71 as abusive and perverse for criminalizing people who have done nothing immoral or harmful.
Andrew Scheer, the Conservative leader, has pledged to repeal Bill C-71 if he is elected prime minister.
Prohibit and Confiscate
Concern of new bans has spiked to a record and gun sales are soaring on speculation Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will use the new law to order more confiscations.
One of the most sinister novelties in Bill C-71 is allowing cabinet to order immediate gun prohibition while delaying confiscation until the owner is dead. This avoids the complexities of immediate surrender or confiscation, as New Zealand did in March.
Bill Blair, the minister exploring a “full ban” on handguns and many rifles and shotguns, told CTV News two weeks ago he doesn’t exclude a confiscation order.
Bill C-71 includes the prohibition of CZ 858 and SAN Swiss Arms rifles from more than 10,000 families, requiring post-mortem seizure and destruction. If the owner doesn’t submit new paperwork, they could go to prison. The government hasn’t said how it will inform owners of the new law.
Trudeau campaigned in the 2015 election on many of the measures included in Bill C-71, and Blair has been actively examining mass confiscation since August.
Opinion polls show Liberal voters are the most hostile to gun owners in supporting bans. A government adviser said last year that new restrictions and prohibitions present an “untapped opportunity” for Trudeau to win re-election this year.
Several Trudeau-appointed senators worked to eliminate civilian firearm ownership during the Bill C-71 review.
- “Let’s have a firearms-free Canada,” Senator Pierre Dalphond tweeted March 29. “Time to ban these arms that generate no real social benefit but expose innocent citizens to death, injuries and psychological traumas,” he tweeted after today’s vote.
- Marilou McPhedran sought to include a handgun ban in Bill C-71.
More Canadian Than Hockey
Hunting and sport shooting are at the heart of Canadian culture and heritage. More adults have a firearm licence authorized by the federal police than play hockey.
The number of people with licences keeps rising to records, driven by the popularity of sport shooting especially among women.