OpenCongress Blog

Blog Feed Comments Feed More RSS Feeds

Health Care and Guns

August 11, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

Monday, at President Obama’s town hall meeting in New Hampshire, a protester showed up carrying a loaded handgun. Last week, somebody accidentally dropped a gun at a meet-and-greet held by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords [D, AZ-8] outside of a local Safeway. With members of Congress getting death threats over the health care bill and some town hall meetings dissolving into violence, the appearance of guns at these events is alarming.

But, from a data perspective, it’s not that surprising. As you can see on our page for the House health care bill, there is a correlation. People opposing the health care bill are also big supporters of gun rights. In case it’s not obvious from the names, the first and third bills in the list below, which is from social data generated by OpenCongress users, are prominent gun-rights bills:

Users opposing H.R.3200 (1933) are also:

Supporting Bill

H.R.17 – Citizens’ Self-Defense Act of 2009 [392]

H.R.25 – Fair Tax Act of 2009 [239]

H.R.197 – National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2009 [217]

H.R.833 – Federal Reserve Board Abolition Act [111]

H.R.1868 – Birthright Citizenship Act of 2009 [110]

Read all blog posts here, or subscribe to our RSS feed to keep up with what’s really happening in Congress.

Like this post? Stay in touch by following us on Twitter, joining us on Facebook, or by Subscribing with RSS.


Displaying 1-30 of 50 total comments.

  • Anonymous 08/12/2009 12:07am

    The UHC bill that should be getting attention and isn’t is HR 676 the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act or the United States National Health Care Act written by Representative John Conyers a Dem in MI. Anyone that is interested in real Universal Health Care,

  • Comm_reply
    Foundersfury 08/18/2009 4:59am

    This comparison is ridiculous, but it should tell everyone that people who love liberty and individual freedom will fight government control at every level. The health care bill is not about health care it is about total government control….48% of the US economy if you include bailouts etc. Gun rights are also about control, we will not be controled in either case, as was intended by the Founders……..

  • yoder 08/12/2009 5:56am

    Weapons showing up at the health care townhall meetings do indeed show the correlation between those opposed to health care reform and gun owners rights, but just because they are legally carrying a weapon does not in any way make it a good idea to bring one to a townhall meeting.

    The weapons are an extension of the yelling and disruption tactics in that they are a tool being used to stifle conversation and debate.

  • Comm_reply
    RRMARIN 08/13/2009 1:00am

    So what your saying its okay to beat some one up instead like the man that was at one of the town hall meeting by Union Workers. Boy that makes me want to support and join a union now. Not!

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/13/2009 2:19pm

    Yes of course, because Union workers tend to beat people up at town hall meetings. In your reality maybe.

  • bandwagonsmasher 08/12/2009 8:08am
    Link Reply
    + -1

    Not cool to imply gun rights supporters are more violent than non-gun rights supporters. Many support gun rights expressly to deter or combat violent crime.

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/12/2009 10:38am

    “Many support gun rights expressly to deter or combat violent crime.”

    I’m for the right to own guns. Still I don’t buy it. “some” maybe. “many” you’re pushing it.

  • Comm_reply
    busterdog2000 08/15/2009 2:07pm

  • Anonymous 08/12/2009 8:34am

    Interesting correlation. What does it tell us. Well, for one, it tells us that the anti-Obama Healthcare crowd are more likely to be law abiding citizens without criminal records. Of course, this makes them very much unlike the bevy of czars Obama has installed in his administration, unlike his personal associates, unlike his political supporters and unlike folks he goes to dinner with when home in Chicago. Facts are stubborn things aren’t they?

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/12/2009 10:42am

    “Well, for one, it tells us that the anti-Obama Healthcare crowd are more likely to be law abiding citizens without criminal records”

    We as a country have a long and well documented past of lax regulation and slim to non-existent enforcement of that lax regulation. This has resulted in a long list of “questionable” individuals obtaining weapons legally and killing as many innocents as possible in as short a time as possible.

  • Comm_reply
    deidre 08/13/2009 3:29pm

    As well as a long(er) list of individuals obtaining weapons illegally and killing innocents. Your point?

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/14/2009 1:46am

    “Your point?”

    I made my point very clearly, and now you’ve helped me make my second point. That “long(er) list of individuals obtaining weapons illegally and killing innocents.” wouldn’t exist if those weapons had not been stolen from people who had “legally” purchased them.

  • ladytrucker 08/12/2009 11:44am

    We the people have the right to keep and bear arms! Government needs to get their nose out of our business!
    We the people need to stand up unified in this country

  • Comm_reply
    jefferyhigh 08/12/2009 1:40pm

    “…resulted in a long list of “questionable” individuals obtaining weapons legally and killing…"

    If there’s a long list you should be able to name several. I’ll settle for two.

  • Comm_reply
    scantling 08/12/2009 4:37pm

    Last time I looked there have been only two lic handgun owners indicted and they looked to be aquitted from what I read.
    Most handgun laws prohibit the carrying of any weapon lic or not in any state, fed building or in any meeting which requires a permit to hold. I suspect the town hall meeting fall under this rule. However all one has to do is place a no handgun symbol on the door and this makes it illegal to carry on that site. And if anyone has gone thru the trouble to obtain a permit he/she will know the penalty for this is severe. They would not take this risk. Therefor I dont buy into the present of guns at the townhall meeting by permitted gun owners.

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/13/2009 2:17pm

    The Virginia Tech and NIU murderers both obtained and used legally purchased weapons.

  • Comm_reply
    Anonymous 08/12/2009 6:55pm

    Ted Kennedy’s car has killed more people than all the guns I own!
    Maybe we should have banned Ted Kennedy from pro-creating and breathing!

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/13/2009 2:09pm

    “Maybe we should have banned Ted Kennedy from pro-creating and breathing!”


  • ladytrucker 08/12/2009 11:56am
    Link Reply
    + -1

    We the American people live in a free society, we do not need Government telling us how to live our lives…or dictate to us how our healthcare will be, period!

    We need to vote for someone whom will truely lower taxes, and not be afraid to say BUY AMERICAN PRODUCTS! WE need to bring our jobs back home!

    I feel we need a Bill that promotes welfare to work programs for able bodied people! I am fed up with the laziness of some of our americans who feel they are entitled to my hard earned money!

  • Anonymous 08/12/2009 12:25pm

    are you crazy?what is this country comeing to?why don’t we have a tax on how many times we piss during the day .enough is enouhg,please give this country back to the people or just fly the hammer and sickle,our founding fathers are rolling over in ther on your guns?from my cold dead hands.i am a american and you all can kiss my -!!!!!

  • jefferyhigh 08/12/2009 1:34pm

    The correlation is absurd.

    If this were any other issue, the presence of guns wouldn’t come up. To make this a guns issue further (and wrongly) stereotypes the people who oppose Obama’s administration and the insane bills they’re trying to force through.

    And conservatives are accused of fear mongering. Talk about the pot and the kettle!

    Constitutional liberty is the only connection between guns and health care.

  • Comm_reply
    donnyshaw 08/12/2009 2:38pm

    I am not making this a gun issue. Just looking at the data and presenting it for what it is.

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/13/2009 2:11pm

    “stereotypes the people who oppose Obama’s administration”

    Sorry, but those stereotypes are being perpetuated on TV daily without any help from us (at all).

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/13/2009 2:13pm

    “stereotypes the people who oppose Obama’s administration”

    If you don’t like those stereotypes then stop perpetuating them.

  • Anonymous 08/12/2009 4:34pm

    How about the data that not one legislator has actually read the entire “proposal” for health care, nor the TARP legislation that was also shoved down the throats of the taxpayers?

  • Comm_reply
    scantling 08/12/2009 4:46pm

    I belive that anyone who represents us “we the people” and votes on a bill without reading it should be brought up on charges and jailed. For stupidity if nothing else.
    I would like to take two reams of blank paper to the town hall an one back sheet with signature and wittness lines the ask them to sign the back sheets personally and we will fill in the blank pages later. What they are doing by not reading it is the same but basicly with " we the people’s name on the guarantor line. Lets but their name on that line.

  • Comm_reply
    yoder 08/14/2009 6:35am

    “I belive that anyone who represents us “we the people” and votes on a bill without reading it should be brought up on charges and jailed."

    Kinda like what happened with the Patriot Act? I can definitely get behind that. Anyone stupid enough to vote for that POS deserves jail time.

  • Comm_reply
    jefferyhigh 08/12/2009 6:16pm

    I understand, except that’s not what it is. It’s a fallacious conclusion unsupported by data.

    The only sustainable connection between people supporting the two bills is the purely political principle of liberty provided for in the Constitution, and that is to be expected. The jump from there to any actionable item, like carrying a gun into a Town Hall meeting as an intentional threat, is speculative at best, and not a little bit partisan.

  • Comm_reply
    vrbahs 08/15/2009 7:04pm

    Yes – the Patriot Act was and is an abomination, one more example where our government took advantage of our collective fear to co-opt our liberties just like they are going to do with global warming and health care. I agree those who voted for the Patriot act should go directly to jail – except judging from some of your posts on guns many of your buds in the congress who voted for the Patriot Act would also go to jail. I do agree though it should never have been passed. The current regime said the Patriot Act was bad too at least until they were in power. I see no rush to repeal it so apparently they must not really believe it to be so evil when it’s in their favor.

  • abaratar 08/12/2009 6:18pm

    I can see why these bill would have similar supporters, with exception of the immigration bill all of the other bills regard personal freedoms and limited government.

Due to the archiving of this blog, comment posting has been disabled.