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Majority of House Democrats vote against amendment protecting certain vets gun rights

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The majority of U.S. House Democrats voted to take the Second Amendment rights away from certain veterans who served in the U.S. Armed Services.

They did so when they overwhelmingly rejected an amendment filed to a U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs funding bill, known as the Crain Amendment.

House Democrats on Wednesday also largely voted against funding the Department of Veterans Affairs when they voted against the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2025. It narrowly passed, largely along party lines, by a vote of 209-197.

The White House said the president would veto the bill for several reasons, including Republican revisions to its LGBTQ policies. But one key measure Democrats overwhelmingly opposed served as a barometer for preserving Second Amendment rights: Section 261 revised through the Crane Amendment.

The amendment, named after its author, U.S. Rep. Eli Crane, R-Arizona, a former U.S. Navy SEAL, was designed to protect veterans’ Second Amendment rights. It clarifies that any veteran who the VA reported to the NICS “was done so incorrectly in violation of their constitutional rights.”

Crane had voiced concerns that VA bureaucrats and Democrats wanted to “create an unauthorized process for dragging veterans before judges for ‘red flag’ disarmament proceedings.”

His provision wasn’t included in the fiscal 2024 VA spending bill last year. Currently, the VA submits veterans’ names to the NICS if a judge appointed them with a financial manager.

The House provision and Crane’s amendment was backed by Gun Owners of America “to protect tens of thousands of veterans from being unconstitutionally disarmed by President Joe Biden’s bureaucrats,” it said.

“Because of a horrendous policy initiated by President [Bill] Clinton, more than 250,000 veterans have had their Second Amendment rights revoked. This has been done without any Due Process – no judge or jury – just a mere determination by bureaucrats at the Veterans Administration that veterans must forfeit their guns when a fiduciary is appointed to handle their finances and complex VA benefits,” Erich Pratt, SVP of Gun Owners of America, told The Center Square.

“Thankfully, GOA-backed legislation that passed this week in the House will continue to prevent the VA from submitting names of veterans to the NICS system. GOA urges the Senate to maintain this rider in their version of the legislation. Despite the temper tantrum from the White House, common sense says no veteran should be disarmed over such ridiculous reasons.”

Democrats overwhelmingly voted against the Crane Amendment with 192 voting against it and only seven voting for it. Thirty-two members didn’t vote on the amendment.

The amendment passed by a vote of 211-193, preventing the VA from disarming an estimated 20,000 veterans during the next fiscal year.

Seven Democrats voted in favor of the amendment: Reps. Henry Cuellar (TX), Jared Golden (ME), Vicente Gonzalez (TX), Mary Peltola (AK), Marie Perez (WA), Gabe Vasquez (NM) and Marc Veasey (TX).

The White House issued a statement saying the president would veto the bill because Republicans changed section 261, which prohibits “the VA from reporting a person determined to be mentally incompetent during the VA benefits evaluation process without the order or finding of a judge, magistrate, or other judicial authority.”

“The proposed revision would effectively prohibit the VA from reporting mentally incompetent beneficiaries who need a fiduciary to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), thus creating a dangerous loophole that would allow these individuals to obtain firearms and endanger their safety and the safety of their communities,” the White House said.

Overall, only four Democrats voted for the entire bill, all of whom also voted for the Crane Amendment: Golden, Gonzalez, Peltola and Perez. Two Republicans also voted against the bill: Reps. Tom McClintock of California and Matt Rosendale of Montana.

Twenty-five members of Congress didn’t vote on the bill, including 14 Democrats and 11 Republicans.