While Americans as a whole were handing Donald Trump a historic presidential win, residents of Maine were defeating an out-of-state push to increase gun control by expanding background checks.
The push was embodied in Question 3, a ballot initiative that would have required Maine residents to go through a background check before letting a friend borrow a gun for hunting. It would have also forced law-abiding citizens to pay a fee for the background check, effectively taxing them for loaning a gun to a friend.
Question 3 was sponsored by Michael Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety, and WCSH 6 reports that it “failed” to pass.
According to the Bangor Daily News, “By any measure, it’s a stunning victory for what David Trahan, the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, called a group of ‘ragtag volunteers.’” It’s a victory that proves “you can win on an issue without money … at the grass-roots level.”
Franklin County Sheriff Scott Nichols also fought against Question 3. He appeared in a television ad, where he stressed that “background checks are ‘already’ [the] law and that [an expansion] wouldn’t stop criminals, but it would rather create them out of otherwise law-abiding Mainers.” In other words, background checks for retail sales have been the law of the land since 1998, and expanding those checks to private sales would only criminalize law-abiding Mainers who refused to comply with new fee requirements and more government oversight on gun sales.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.