Wyoming’s U.S. senators have signed letters to Senate appropriators requesting that they include language to prohibit spending on implementation of the United Nations (U.N.) Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). In the letters Senators Mike Enzi, John Barrasso, both R-Wyo., and other senators led by Senators Jerry Moran, R-Kan., and James Inhofe, R-Okla., expressed concerns with both the substance and the process by which the treaty was adopted.
“We are deeply concerned that the ATT does not expressly recognize, in the body of the treaty text, the fundamental, individual right to keep and bear arms, and the individual right of personal self-defense, as well as the legitimacy of hunting, sports shooting, and other lawful activities pertaining to the private ownership of firearms and related materials, and are thus concerned that the treaty risks encouraging infringements on freedoms protected by the Second Amendment,” wrote the senators.
Under the senators’ proposal appropriators would make clear that no money could be, “…obligated or expended to sustain domestic prosecutions based on any charge related to the Arms Trade Treaty, or to implement the Treaty until the Senate approves a resolution of ratification for the Treaty and the House and Senate adopt implementing legislation for the Treaty.”
The senators believe the language is necessary because Secretary of State John Kerry signed the treaty and the Administration is making efforts to implement it unilaterally through administrative actions.
Additional concerns include the treaty’s possible hampering of the U.S.’s ability to provide arms to allies, the implementation of the treaty without transmitting it to the Senate, additional monetary costs and that the treaty would make Americans vulnerable to domestic prosecution under this treaty.
The letters were sent to the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Programs, the Subcommittee on Homeland Security, the Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs and the Subcommittee on Defense.