US gun laws - Constitution supersedes international treaties ratified by the U.S. Senate..
Dear Ms. Lincoln:
Thank you for contacting me about your concerns regarding the proposal of a United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). I appreciate hearing from you.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has not signed, nor has the U.S. Senate ratified, a United Nations small arms treaty. The ATT is currently a concept, and discussions about the feasibility of such a treaty have been ongoing. The aim of such a treaty would be to combat the illicit international trade of small arms by “tightening regulation of, and setting international standards for, the import, export and transfer of conventional weapons” between nations in order to “close gaps in existing regional and national arms export control systems that allow weapons to pass onto the illicit market.”
I want to be clear that even if such a treaty came to pass, U.S. rights and laws regarding the sale and ownership of small arms would still apply within the United States. The right to keep and bear arms is guaranteed in the Constitution of the United States, and in the 1957 Supreme Court case Reid v. Covert, the U.S. Supreme Court established that the Constitution supersedes international treaties ratified by the U.S. Senate.
Let me assure you that this effort is not a global gun ban or any effort to deny law-abiding citizens the right to bear arms in accordance with their national laws. Please rest assured that I would never permit the United Nations or any international organization to override American laws or intrude on American family life. Like many Oregonians, I believe in the right of law-abiding citizens to own guns for protection and to hunt.
Again, thank you for keeping me apprised of your views. If I can be of any further assistance to you on this or other issues, please do not hesitate to contact me.
United States Senator