Alabama SB 3
Due in part to the number of dedicated journalists covering state legislatures plummeting in recent years, the sad truth about gun legislation is that the best source for news on it is... the National Rifle Association. And they love Alabama SB 3, which conjures up visions of self-defense, but in reality does nothing more than put more guns in more hands in more places, and puts zero onus on the carrier to demonstrate competency.
This is a dreadful, disingenuous piece of legislation that imagines problems that don't exist in service of simply wanting to increase the proliferation of guns in a place that already has an overabundance. As we did last year, we will be grading future action on this bill and are urging oppostion.
New Hampshire HB 1542
New Hampshire HB 1749
Two more pieces of Republican-sponsored, NRA backed legislation that we've seen time and again in other states. The first, 1542, would allow guns on the property of any college or university in the state. HB 1749 would prohibit local regulation of "firearms, firearm components, firearms supplies, or knives." This ostensibly is to make it easier for firearm owners to follow the law, but in reality it's an attempt to make cities and municipalities act as if they are rural locales. It treats the priorities of city-dwellers as if they are supplicant to those of the rest of the state. We've seen it over and over again, and not only does it fly in the face of years of Republican insistence that they believe in "local control," but it's a pocket version of reciprocity, which promotes a race to the bottom when it comes to gun regulation. We are grading action on both of these bills, and are urging opposition.
New Hampshire HB 1566
A bit of good news from the Granite State, as Rep. Delmar Burridge (D-Cheshire) has introduced legislation that would prohibit open carrying of firearms in doctor's offices, restaurants, churches, and public buildings. We are urging support.
Virginia HB 41
Virginia SB 1
Both pieces of legislation, introduced in advance of the opening of the Virginia legislative session, ban bump stocks in the Commonwealth. This is legislation we've seen introduced in almost every state legislature that's convened so far for 2018, and it will be interesting to see if Republican members, spooked by their near-loss of the body last November, will be interested in getting on board with legislation a majority of Americans support.
The Senate bill was introduced by Adam Ebbin, the House version by Mark Levine, both Alexandria Democrats. A number of the Democratic freshman class have already signed on as co-sponsors of the House bill. We will be grading all action on both these pieces of legislation and are uging support.
Washington SB 5992
Another bump stock ban, this time in Washington, and it's one that has a bipartisan group of cosponsors and a Democratic majority in the Senate to help guide it to passage. The NRA and its allies will mobilize against it, but Washington's legislature had one of the best aggregate scores of any state we graded last session, and this bill has an excellent chance to become law. We'll be keeping an eye on it, grading future action and are urging support.