National Reciprocity: GOP Reps. Must Adopt ‘America First’ Not ‘Congress First’

Alex Wong/Getty Images
Alex Wong/Getty Images

National reciprocity legislation has been sitting in Congress since January 3, 2017, and we have heard of a growing roster of co-sponsors but little else. Then suddenly, following the June 14 attack in Alexandria, numerous Republican Congressional members were consumed with national reciprocity.

But the problem is that many House members now focused on national reciprocity are consumed with special carry privileges for Congress; carry privileges the common man will never enjoy.

For example, Breitbart News reported that Rep. Brian Babin (R-TX) put forward post-Alexandria legislation that will give congressmen “the ability to attempt to qualify for a concealed carry permit – either through their home state or a training program created by the United States Capitol Police (USCP).” And for those who acquire a permit, the bill will:

Direct the USCP to grant Members of Congress the ability to concealed carry in nearly every conceivable scenario – including federal parks and buildings, the national mall, to and from their offices, at schools and military bases – with only a few limited restrictions.  These would include National Special Security Events, other areas under the direct jurisdiction of the Secret Service and commercial airliners.

To be clear, Babin also supports the national reciprocity legislation introduced in Congress on January 3. But that reciprocity bill has not been passed and, even when it does, it will not give the common man the carry privileges Babin wants to secure for the ruling class.

The chasm between the common man and the ruling class was well illustrated by Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), during a June 21 interview on Breitbart News Daily. Like Babin, Brooks supports two separate approaches to national reciprocity, one for the common man and one for the ruling class.

After assuring listeners that he supports reciprocity legislation for average Americans, Brooks said that people have “to recognize that congressmen are different from the regular citizens of the United States.” He described the difference:

[Congressmen] are high-profile targets of lone wolf shooters, as we saw [June 14]. We are also high-profile targets of Muslim and other terrorists, and that distinguishes us from the general public. The general public needs to have the right to bear arms to defend themselves from criminal activity. We not only have to be able to defend ourselves from criminal activity, but also from the high-profile target status that we are burdened with as members of the United States Congress.

Missing from Brooks’ illustration is the fact that “regular citizens” face terror threats as well; such threats are not specific to the ruling class. For example, 49 “regular citizens” were killed in the June 12, 2016, Orlando terrorist attack and 14 “regular citizens” were killed in the December 2, 2015, San Bernardino terrorist attack.

Ought not these attacks–and others than could be listed–justify calls to give “regular citizens” the same carry privileges being sought by Babin, Brooks, and the rest of the ruling class?

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


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