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  • Robert Farago

Hunter Biden Can Beat the Rap!

with a little help from The Supremes

When Hunter Biden ticked “no” on question 11.e on ATF form 4473, he sealed his fate. The question reads as above, as follows:

11.e. Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?

Actually, Hunter sealed his fate when he published Beautiful Things (reviewed here). His autobiography describes his addiction to crack cocaine during the period in question, in no uncertain terms.

Hunter’s tell-some (rather than tell-all) does not, however, mention the firearm’s ultimate fate. Hunter literally threw the gun away nine days later – in a dumpster near a school.

The coverage of Hunter Biden’s gun charges somehow neglects to mention that fact. Which is no small matter.

In Delaware, it’s illegal for a person who isn’t a licensed importer, manufacturer or licensed firearms dealer to sell, buy, loan, give or otherwise dispose of a firearm unless the transaction is conducted “through a licensed firearm dealer.”

The penalty for unlawfully disposing a firearm is an unclassified misdemeanor, with a maximum sentence of one year in jail and up to a $2300 fine.

The Secret Service intervened in the local investigation of the crime and retrieved Hunter’s gun. No charges were filed.

But there’s no escaping the federal beef for that little check mark on Question 11a. A crime punishable by up to 15 years in federal prison (up from 10 thanks to a law signed by his father). Or is there?

There almost was, already. But the plea agreement - stipulating probation and a permanent ban on firearms possession - fell apart in court.

If Hunter goes down for the gun charge, a judge would have a hard time not ordering a jail sentence. Assuming the words “equal justice under the law” have any meaning.

Just so we’re clear, there’s considerable precedent in the penalties meted out for this infraction. Last May…

Ra'ann Michell Coleman, 49, of Eastman, Ga., was sentenced to 33 months in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of False Statement During the Purchase of a Firearm.

Miracle Star Vaughn, a 27-year-old woman from North Liberty, Iowa, was sentenced to serve one year and a day in a federal prison after pleading guilty to making false statements on Form 4473.

Uh-oh! Not to worry. Hunter Biden’s lawyers have a trump card (so to speak). The Wall Street Journal explains.

In a 6-3 ruling, the court’s conservative majority decreed that gun-control laws must be deeply rooted in historical precedent to pass constitutional muster. Governments defending them bear the burden of showing that their laws are similar, or at least analogous, to firearm regulations widely enforced around the time of the nation’s infancy, the court said. 

Now you might say, what kind of bullshit is that? After reading the Second Amendment once or twice, I’m right there with you.

So what is the historical record on law on guns and drugs? Specifically (and exclusively), alcohol.

Early-American laws made it a crime to carry a gun while intoxicated. But judges ruling against the drug-user gun ban cited the absence of historical laws that entirely stripped away the gun rights of Americans who consumed intoxicating substances. 

The key word is “entirely.” Ruling that Hunter should not lose his gun rights permanently is not the same as ruling that Question 11.a - and the penalty for lying on the form - is unconstitutional.

Worth a shot! But oh, the irony!

President Biden, who supports tougher gun regulations, has said the Bruen decision “should deeply trouble us all.” Since the ruling, his Justice Department has argued in numerous cases that drug users aren’t protected by the Second Amendment.

Irony schmirony. Hunter’s lawyers have already signaled they’re Bruen a Second Amendment defense. Why wouldn’t they?

And then there’s the ultimate get-out-of-jail free card: a Presidential pardon.

There’s no question in my mind daddy will give his son a pardon if it comes to it. And then resign.

In fact, I’m sure the people around the President who want him to bow out - and there are plenty - are offering him that scenario.

Hunter’s tax problems increase the likelihood of a pardon and a shuffle-off-to-Buffalo exit for his father, who will say something touching about addiction issues generally, maybe even start a foundation.

For the record, I don’t think addicts should lose their gun rights permanently.

Nor do I think the government should be asking about about a gun purchaser’s addiction issues, never mind marijuana consumption.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

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