Following the amassing of more than 44,000 signatures petitioning for the right to open-carry during the RNC convention in July, The Hill reports The Secret Service released a statement saying that "only authorized law enforcement personnel" working with the agency will be allowed to carry firearms inside protected areas. Petitioners reacted angrily to the decision, "this is a direct affront to the Second Amendment and puts all attendees at risk." The way this cronyist campaign is going, guns are the last thing the GOP should be worrying about.
The Hill reports that The Secret Service says people attending the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this July will not be allowed to carry guns.
The statement comes in response to a petition that calls for allowing open carry of guns inside Quicken Loans Arena, the host venue.
The petition has amassed more than 44,000 signatures as of Monday morning.
The Secret Service cited federal law that allows the agency to prevent firearms from being carried into venues with protectees present, even in open-carry states. The agency cites Title 18 United States Code Sections 3056 and 1752 which says:
Title 18 United States Code Sections 3056 and 1752, provides the Secret Service authority to preclude firearms from entering sites visited by our protectees, including those located in open-carry states. Only authorized law enforcement personnel working in conjunction with the Secret Service for a particular event may carry a firearm inside of the protected site.
The Secret Service works closely with our local law enforcement partners in each state to ensure a safe environment for our protectees and the public. Individuals determined to be carrying firearms will not be allowed past a predetermined outer perimeter checkpoint, regardless of whether they possess a ticket to the event.
The petition argues that the rule is a violation of the public's Second Amendement right since Ohio is an open carry state:
This is a direct affront to the Second Amendment and puts all attendees at risk. As the National Rifle Association has made clear, "gun-free zones" such as the Quicken Loans Arena are "the worst and most dangerous of all lies." The NRA, our leading defender of gun rights, has also correctly pointed out that "gun free zones... tell every insane killer in America... (the) safest place to inflict maximum mayhem with minimum risk." (March 4, 2016 and Dec. 21, 2012)
But Quicken Loans Arena uses its right as a private entity to ban firearms under Ohio state law, according to the website.
The Hill further notes that the Republican National Committee deferred questions about venue security to the Secret Service, which is coordinating with federal, state and local law enforcement to secure the convention site.
“The Republican Party has been and will continue to be a staunch supporter of the Second amendment,” said convention spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski. “It is in our platform and is strongly supported by our candidates.
“The Republican National Convention is a National Special Security Event which means the Secret Service is the lead agency and we will defer to their planning as it relates to safety and security of the convention.”
Finally, we note that the origins of the petition are murky, and some websites have questioned whether it is satire or a hoax.