1 Feb 2016 – The Leader of the House of Commons last week bungled a major chance to reassure the licensed firearms community that the government would defend their interests at the EU.
On Thursday DUP MP Jim Shannon, who is pro-shooting, told Parliament that “the most law-abiding section of the community are those who hold firearms” and asked whether Chris Grayling MP, the government-appointed Leader of the House, would hold a debate about the upcoming EU gun ban.
Grayling replied: “We have in this country firearms laws that maintain the right balance and are appropriate for the needs of a modern society.”
Damningly, the Tory MP added: “The best way that the rest of Europe could deal with the matter would be to adopt the same approach as the United Kingdom has taken.”
That approach was the knee-jerk ban of self-loading rifles in 1988 and on pistols of almost all types in 1997. Experts agree that neither ban helped reduce gun crime.
UK MEP Vicky Ford is the EU’s rapporteur in charge of the proposed gun ban. Like Grayling, she is also a Conservative.