Rafferty reaffirms vote to kill gun registry
Local MP John Rafferty will be sticking to his campaign promise and voting to abolish the long gun registry when the House of Commons resumes sitting next week.
“I will be voting to continue debate on the bill, and I will be voting for the [private member’s] bill to dismantle the gun registry should it come later in the month,” the NDP MP for Thunder Bay-Rainy River said in a statement issued from his Ottawa office yesterday morning.
“I refuse to be bullied or threatened by either side of the debate by proponents or opponents of the gun registry into doing what is clearly not in the interest or consistent with the fundamental beliefs of the majority of my constituents,” he vowed.
MPs will be voting twice on the long gun registry, which was established under a previous Liberal government.
The first vote will be on a motion put forward by the Liberals to end debate on, and ultimately “kill,” Bill C-391—the private member’s bill to abolish the registry introduced by Conservative backbencher Candice Hoeppner.
The second vote will be on the third and final reading of Hoeppner’s bill, which, if passed, would mean the end to the long gun registry.
Conservative MPs will be voting to abolish the registry while Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff will “whip” his caucus to vote in support of it.
Bloc Quebecois MPs also are expected to vote in favour of keeping the registry.
This split means the fate of the registry rests in the hands of the New Democrats.
While NDP leader Jack Layton supports the registry, he has refused to whip his MPs to vote either way.
He did announce Tuesday, however, that he had enough MP support to keep the registry going.
NDP MPs Charlie Angus (Timmins-James Bay), Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury), Malcolm Allen (Welland), and Claude Gravelle (Nickel Belt) all have switched away from supporting the dismantling of the registry.
Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP Carol Hughes announced this morning that she also has changed her mind and now will vote to support the registry.
Nova Scotia’s Peter Stoffer is holding a news conference Monday, when he is expected to announce he’ll vote to keep the registry.