Republican Kyle Koehler derails Constitutional Carry

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You’ve sent thousands of emails. You made hundreds of phone calls. You demanded NO votes on weakening amendments.

Above all, you told them to vote YES on HB178, the Ohio Constitutional Carry Act.

And because of all of your hard work we are getting very close to moving Constitutional Carry out of the House Federalism Committee!

Yesterday was the seventh (yes, you read that right – this is an unprecedented level of hearings!) hearing on HB178, and a lot happened.

Chomping at the bit to kill Constitutional Carry by loading it up with “poison pill” amendments, the radical gun-grabbers went to work.

Representative Joseph Miller started off the flurry of gun-control amendments with AM_133_046.

This amendment would have created a state mandate that lawful citizens be forced to purchase liability insurance in order to be eligible to even own a firearm.

In other words, law-abiding Ohioans would no longer be able to exercise their 2nd Amendment freedoms without buying one of Miller’s insurance policies first.

Representative Joseph Miller was only recently elected in the 2018 election cycle, but is quickly trying to advance his political career in leftist, liberal circles by becoming an advocate for gun-control.

Unfortunately for Representative Joseph Miller, he isn’t the brightest bulb of the bunch and routinely gets stumped up by testifiers in the committee, and his amendment got killed by a vote of 8 opposed and 4 in favor!

Then Rep Miller ran AM_133_0673 which would have created more permanent “disability” clauses, or permanent revocations of firearms rights.

That amendment was again shot down by a NO vote of 8 opposed to 4 in favor.

Adam Miller, the anti-gun Democrat lead on the Federalism Committee, tried to run AM_133_0680 that would have outlawed concealed carry during voting.

Clearly not able to understand how dumb it is to subjugate one right in order to exercise another, Representative A. Miller plowed ahead anyway and his amendment went down in flames by a vote of 8 against and 4 in favor.

It’s also important to note that Adam Miller does everything he can during regular hearings to pretend he’s a reasonable, likable individual. We always knew he hated the Second Amendment, however, and these amendments proved it once and for all.

Just in case there was any doubt, Rep Adam Miller followed that amendment up with AM_133_0761, Bloomberg’s infamous “Universal Background Checks” bill that ultimately seeks to track, trace and register every gun and gun owner in the state of Ohio.

Not to be outdone, hardcore liberal Representative Brigid Kelly jumped in with amendments AM_133_0681 and AM_133_0760 which would have outlawed carrying on all Ohio transit systems and outlawed bumpstocks, respectively.

A lot of people call Representative Kelly “Frigid Brigid” at the Statehouse (she looks a little stiff), but we think it may be her reading skills that have gone cold because the Trump Administration’s ban on bump stocks went into effect back in March and are already illegal in America!

Like the others, amendments 0761, 681 and 760 all failed to pass by a vote count of 8 opposed and 4 in favor.

But then things started going sideways.

Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield)

Representative Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield), one of the angriest legislators we’ve ever met in legislative politics and who we’ve been warning you about, introduced AM_133_0457X2.

This is a very bad amendment. Let me explain.

It is no secret that Ohio does not have a Stand-Your-Ground law.

In Ohio, before a person uses deadly force to stop a would-be killer, rapist, kidnapper or violent criminal, a lawful person must mentally reconcile our “duty to retreat” requirement before they take defensive action.

Put simply, a law-abiding citizen has to make a split-second decision whether or not taking immediate defensive action – and NOT trying to retreat from their attacker – will hold up in court.

And if that person lives in a county with an anti-gun prosecutor like Cuyahoga, Franklin, Hamilton or others where prosecutors are very eager to punish gun owners for defending themselves, that split-second decision could cost them their lives.

Kyle Koehler’s amendment would have forced every Ohio firearms dealer to include a pamphlet with each new firearm sale informing them that they have a “duty to retreat” under Ohio law, among other things.

And until Ohio fixes our disastrous self-defense laws, Koehler’s amendment could get innocent people killed.

That’s why we urged our membership before yesterday’s committee meeting to contact the members of the committee and tell them to vote NO on the Koehler amendment.

And many thousands of you did!

Despite that tremendous amount of opposition from gun owners, Representative Doug Green and disgraced former Speaker Ryan Smith – both Republicans – joined with Republican Kyle Koehler in voting YES on the amendment.

Smelling blood in the water and an opportunity to create potentially lethal scenarios for gun owners, the anti-gun Democrats piled on their yes votes.

The list of “yes” votes is shocking:
Betrayal Republican Kyle Koehler
Betrayal Republican Ryan Smith
Betrayal Republican Doug Green
Anti-gun Democrat Adam Miller
Anti-gun Democrat Joseph Miller
Anti-gun Democrat Brigid Kelly
Anti-gun Democrat Fred Strayhorn

The opposed votes read like a who’s-who of Ohio’s pro-gun legislators:
Joint Sponsor Ron Hood (R-Ashville)
Joint Sponsor Tom Brinkman (R-Mt Lookout)
Chairman John Becker (R-Union Township)
Representative Reggie Stoltzfus (R-Minerva)
Representative Bill Dean (R-Xenia)

Sadly, the Republican turncoat “yes” votes combined with the now-salivating Democrat “yes” votes totaled 7 and the pro-gun “NO” votes totaled 5, and the amendment was added to HB178.

Not content with his first betrayal vote, former Speaker Ryan Smith tee’d off against gun owners next with AM-133_0755.

As written, HB178 joins Ohio with thirty eight other states and strikes Ohio’s “duty to notify” statute that requires lawful gun owners to notify law-enforcement at every encounter that they are carrying a firearm.

The practice of notification has proven very dangerous for gun owners AND law enforcement officers, and repealing it is a very important part of HB178.

The reason why is because competent law-enforcement officers treat EVERY situation as if there is the potential of a firearm present.

A “duty to notify” law gives inexperienced law enforcement a false sense of security, which is why the majority of American states do not have this requirement.

Not only should lawful citizens not have to notify law enforcement that they are exercising a right, but violent killers and criminals never tell cops that they are carrying deadly weapons anyway!

We had heard beforehand that Representative Smith was considering running this amendment for the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police (a very anti-gun political organization that testifies against all of the pro-gun bills) and had been urging you all to tell the committee to oppose this amendment.

The good news is that so many thousands of you did contact the committee with your demands that they received your message loud and clear and shot the amendment down by a vote of 6 opposed to 5 in favor!

But while we’re very glad that Smith’s amendment was blocked, we have two very important developments to report.

First, not only is Ryan Smith doing everything he can to water down HB178 for Ohio’s gun-control organizations, but he is also rumored to be an outright NO vote on the overall bill.

With vote margins getting thinner on the House Federalism Committee, gun owners can’t afford to have a Benedict Arnold poisoning other members of the committee. We’ll let you know when we have something concrete.

The second and most important piece of news is that the Federalism Committee did NOT vote HB178 out of committee as previously planned.

In final minutes before the vote was about to happen, Speaker of the House Larry Householder canceled the vote.

On his Facebook page, Speaker Householder declared his agreement that Koehler’s Amendment was not good and was postponing the vote until next week in order to give the committee time to whip the votes necessary to strike the Koehler amendment from the bill.

The Speaker’s words are very encouraging, but there are many additional reasons why the Speaker might have ordered the postponement of Constitutional Carry that we must consider.

HB178 has had an unprecedented number of committee hearings.

Just like the sixteen other states that have passed Constitutional Carry have experienced, all of the gun-grabbers like Bloomberg’s Moms Demand Action have been joined by the political law-enforcement groups to shout that “there will be blood in the streets” if this bill becomes law.

But everybody knows how dumb that is. They predicted the same thing when Ohio passed concealed carry, and it never happened.

The fact is, the Fraternal Order of Police and other political law enforcement groups all oppose HB178 because they oppose EVERY pro-gun bill that comes before the Ohio Legislature.

Last year, even though the bill was gutted and watered down beyond recognition, they even opposed HB228.

Make no mistake about it, the REAL cops of Ohio — cops on the front line who fight crime every day — all support HB178 because they know that law-abiding gun owners aren’t a problem, we are part of the solution to stopping violent crime.

Back to the bill, one reason why Householder may have slowed it down Federalism Committee is to prepare to send it to a kill committee.

Even though HB178 has been fully vetted by the House Federalism Committee via an unprecedented seven hearings, Speaker Householder has told the media that he wants to send it to another committee after it passes Federalism.

We’ll have more on that for you in a future email.

As you can see, there is a lot of political jockeying going on behind the scenes going on right now at the Statehouse.

And that is never a good thing when it is our gun rights that are being thrown back and forth!

The good news is, you and I are right where we need to be to keep turning up the pressure in Columbus.

You’ve already helped prove that gun owners are tremendous at that cranking up the pressure.

That’s why we’re asking you to contact Speaker Larry Householder right away and tell him to BOOT Kyle Koehler, Ryan Smith and Doug Green off of the House Federalism Committee and replace them with pro-gun representatives who will honor the Constitution and remove Koehler’s deadly amendment!

That’s the most important thing you can do for gun rights right now in Ohio.

Another thing you can do is help us crank up the pressure on the members of this Federalism Committee by making a donation to Ohio Gun Owners.

We are trying to raise $5,000 immediately in order to help push this bill out of the House Federalism Committee and send it to the House floor for a vote before the legislature slinks out of Columbus and goes on summer break.

Your donation of $250, $100 or $50 right now will go a long ways towards that effort.

If that is simply too much, we would happily group your contribution of $$25 or even $15 together with contributions from others to help push us towards our goal.

Whatever you do, please email Speaker Larry Householder, as that is most important!

For Ohio,

Chris Dorr
Executive Director
Ohio Gun Owners

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Email Recipient Addresses, [email protected]

Subject Line
Speaker Householder: Give Koehler, Smith and Green the BOOT!

Message Body
Dear Speaker Larry Householder,

After the good work gun owners do at election time and the good work we have done recently to support Constitutional Carry (HB178), I was outraged to hear of the actions of Representatives Kyle Koehler, Ryan Smith and Doug Green.

Without a Stand-Your-Ground law in Ohio, Koehler’s bad amendment that he had to use anti-gun Democrats to pass is bad policy for gun owners.

That’s why I’m emailing you to ask you to either get Representatives Koehler, Smith and Green to agree to reverse their votes via a correctional amendment, or give these three jokers the boot from the House Federalism Committee!

This wonderful legislation is already law in 16 states, and after having had a whopping 7 committee hearings already on this bill, it’s time to push it out and move it to the House so that gun owners statewide can start mobilizing for a floor vote.

Ohio Gun Owners’ members and supporters, like myself, believe Ohio citizens should be able to enjoy the same rights that so many other states do, and we thank you for your attention to this matter.

Ohio Gun Owners is organized as a 501(c)(4) organization under IRS code and contributions are not deductible for income tax purposes.