Would Washington DC's Mandatory $250,000 Insurance Policy For Gun Owners Be Constitutional?

The gun grabbers know they don’t have the political horsepower to actually grab the guns. So, instead, they’re just going to make buying, possessing, carrying and using a gun so fraught with red tape and expense that nobody does it.

WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The D.C. Council is considering requiring people to purchase liability insurance before they can get a license to own a gun.

The bill would mandate that prospective gun owners maintain at least a $250,000 policy. The policy would cover damages from negligent acts or intentional acts that aren’t undertaken in self-defense.

A handful of states are considering similar measures, but none has passed such a law.

The District of Columbia has some of the nation’s strictest gun-control laws. Handguns were banned in the city before a landmark 2008 Supreme Court ruling.

A council committee will hold a hearing Thursday on the insurance requirement.

I’m sure the insurance industry is thrilled, and why wouldn’t they be? This would be a legal mandate to purchase their product that would be followed, for the most part, by people who rarely do anything with their guns that would require a payout.

So the insurance folks win. The gun grabbers make gun ownership a little more of a hassle. But the citizens, we lose.

Of course, insurance mandates already exist. Every state in the union requires auto insurance, but in that instance we’re not talking about insurance as an obstacle between citizens and a constitutionally-protected right. Driving on public roads is not a right, but a privilege. Owning a gun is a right, with its own amendment no less.

Which makes me wonder if this sort of requirement wouldn’t be unconstitutional. For instance, it is unconstitutional for the government to require citizens to pay a fee or a tax to vote. So how can it be constitutional for the government to require an insurance policy to own a gun?

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and host of the Plain Talk Podcast which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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