After Obama win, U.S. backs new U.N. arms treaty talks
The U.S. Mission to the United Nations helped move a controversial arms trade treaty on Wednesday, less than 24 hours after President Obama won reelection.
The Obama administration was widely blamed by treaty advocates for derailing the effort back in July when it asked for more time amid growing opposition from Republicans and pro-gun-rights Democrats who are worried the treaty would affect the sale of civilian weapons in the United States. Fifty senators — including eight Democrats — signed on to a letter at the time signaling their opposition to the treaty.
The U.S. Mission said the timing of the vote had nothing to do with the election. They said it was initially scheduled for last week but was delayed because of Hurricane Sandy.
“Our objectives for the ATT have not changed,” a Mission official told The Hill. “In particular, we seek a treaty that contributes to international security by fighting illicit arms trafficking and proliferation, protects the sovereign right of states to conduct legitimate arms trade, and meets the concerns that we have been articulating throughout. As we have made clear, we will not accept any treaty that infringes on the constitutional rights of our citizens to bear arms.”