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Charlie T Waite

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Posts posted by Charlie T Waite

  1. Last night, the House State Affairs Committee approved pro-gun legislation, Senate Bill 100 and Senate Bill 111.  The measures were sent to the House Floor for final approval and could be considered soon. Please contact your State Representative and ask them to SUPPORT Senate Bill 100 and Senate Bill 111.

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    Senate Bill 100 provides protections for gun stores, ranges, or any other entity that engages in the lawful selling or servicing of firearms, components, or accessories. SB 100 also prevents the prohibition, regulation, or seizure of citizens’ Second Amendment rights during a declared State of Emergency.

    Senate Bill 111 reduces the cost for some types of concealed carry permits. 

    Please contact your State Representative and ask them to SUPPORT Senate Bill 100 and Senate Bill 111.

  2. Yesterday, The House State, Civic, Military, & Veterans Affairs Committee passed House Bill 1106 by a 7 to 4 vote.  The measure now heads to the House Floor for further consideration. Please contact your State Representative and ask them to OPPOSE House Bill 1106.

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    House Bill 1106 imposes government-mandated standards for storing firearms, rendering a person’s firearm useless when needed for self-defense.  This should be a matter of personal responsibility, as everyone’s situation is different. 

    Again, please contact your State Representative and ask them to OPPOSE House Bill 1106.

  3. Today, the Montana House passed Emergency Powers Legislation, House Bill 504, by a 67 to 32 vote.  Having now passed out of House, HB 504 will now go to the Senate for further consideration.  Please contact your State Senator and ask them to SUPPORT House Bill 504.

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    House Bill 504 provides protections for gun stores, ranges, or any other entity that engages in the lawful selling or servicing of firearms, components, or accessories. HB 504 also prevents the prohibition, regulation, or seizure of citizens’ Second Amendment rights during a declared State of Emergency.

    Again, please contact your State Senator and ask them to SUPPORT House Bill 504.

  4. These NRA-backed proposals would allow law-abiding citizens to carry a handgun without a state-issued License To Carry (LTC).  The existing LTC law would not be repealed.  Criminals who are prohibited from possessing firearms (i.e., felons, fugitives from justice, individuals committed by the courts for mental illness, domestic abusers) would still be barred from carrying guns.  It would not prevent the enforcement of any laws broken by criminals who misuse firearms. 

    Please contact your State Representatives and urge them to co-author HB 1238, HB 1927 and HB 1587

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    Please also contact your State Senators and urge them to co-sponsor SB 540.

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    → Texas’ Current Gun Laws: Not a Significant Policy Leap

    Texas currently allows lawfully-possessed long guns to be carried openly without a state-issued license, and handguns concealed in a motor vehicle, boat or recreational vehicle without a LTC.  Law-abiding citizens can also carry handguns without a license on their own premises or on premises under their control.

    → Not Unprecedented: 18 Other States Have Similar Laws

    Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia & Wyoming currently allow law-abiding individuals to carry a handgun without a government-issued permit. 

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    → Crime Rates: The Arizona Experience

    The state of Arizona is the most populated state with the longest track record on permitless carry.  From 2010-2015, the years immediately preceding and following their 2011 law, the murder rate in the state dropped 29.7% and the robbery rate fell 14.2%.  [Note: Experts caution that a direct, causal relationship does not exist between the state’s gun laws and crime rates.]

    → Residents Still Seeking Licenses in Permitless Carry States

    Arizona’s experience here is instructive as well.  In 2011, according to the U.S General Accountability Office, there were approximately 163,000 active carry permits in the state, which had a population of 4.5 million at the time (3.6% of the adult population licensed.)  According to Arizona DPS, as of February 2021, there are 388,716 active carry permits in the state, which had a population in 2020 of 7.279 million (5.3% of the adult population licensed).  In addition to continuing to voluntarily seek out training, honest citizens recognize the benefits of acquiring and maintaining a carry license – namely, reciprocity with other states when traveling and exemption from background check requirements when purchasing a firearm from a licensed dealer.

  5. Today, the House Judiciary Committee issued a favorable report to House Bill 3094, to legalize the open carry of handguns. It will now go to the House floor for further consideration. Please contact your state representative and ask them to SUPPORT HB 3094.

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    House Bill 3094 allows citizens who hold a concealed weapons permit, to carry a handgun in the manner they choose. Currently, South Carolina is one of just five states that do not explicitly allow open carry, among them Illinois, New York, and California. Self-defense situations are difficult to predict and everyone has different circumstances. It is unreasonable for the law to impose a one-size-fits-all method of carrying a handgun for self-defense.

    Again, please contact your state representative and ask them to SUPPORT HB 3094.

  6. Tomorrow, the House State and Local Government Committee is hearing House Bill 89 to amend Ohio’s “duty to inform” law. Please contact committee members and ask them to SUPPORT HB 89.

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    House Bill 89 removes the requirement that a concealed handgun licensee notify a law enforcement officer that they are carrying a concealed handgun when stopped for a law enforcement purpose, like a routine traffic stop.

    Under current law, when a concealed handgun licensee comes into contact with a law enforcement officer, the individual must immediately inform the law enforcement officer that they are carrying a concealed handgun. Failure to inform law enforcement results in a misdemeanor.

    By eliminating this requirement, it acknowledges a simple human behavior; when pulled over, most individuals are not thinking about the “duty to inform” requirement. Most are contemplating what particular driving action may have resulted in their detainment, whether it be for speeding or another type of moving violation. To add another element in the “traffic stop” process for the driver is confusing at best, and may result in an unintended criminal penalty and an additional fine.

    Again, please contact committee members and ask them to SUPPORT HB 89

  7. As President Joe Biden (D) has never seen a gun-control bill he doesn’t like, the mainstream media has been salivating over the prospects; though, to name one outlet, Politico’s recent reporting on the topic makes them sound so very disappointed that the filibuster rule in the U.S. Senate will make passing gun-control bills difficult, as they would need to achieve a 60-vote majority to end a filibuster.

    Still, the pressure is growing. So much so that when Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who has said he is not for ending the filibuster rule, was asked again whether he could alter his position, he said, “NEVER!… . What don’t you understand about NEVER?!”

    Here are four reason that make it clear gun-control attempts are coming soon.

    1. The White House Met with Gun-Control Groups

    On February 10, the Biden administration met with leading gun-control advocates.

    Here’s part of the White House statement on the meeting: “Today, Domestic Policy Advisor Susan Rice and White House Public Engagement Director and Senior Advisor Cedric Richmond hosted a virtual discussion with leaders of gun violence prevention advocacy groups – Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, Giffords, and Brady. They discussed the ongoing public health crisis of gun violence in America, the historic increase in homicides across American cities last year, and commonsense steps that can be taken to make our communities safer such as closing background check loopholes, stopping the proliferation of unregulated and untraceable ‘ghost’ guns, and expanding community-based violence intervention programs.”

    2. The White Press Secretary Says It’s Coming

    White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said gun control is “a priority” to President Biden. She said for Biden this is “on a personal level.” She said Biden would “love to see action” and “is happy and eager” to “take on the NRA.” Psaki even says Biden “hasn’t ruled out” acting without Congress.

    3. Biden Said He Would Do It

    President Biden’s campaign website spelled out his many desires for gun bans, confiscations, onerous regulations, and more. Biden plainly told us he will, if he can: ban and confiscate the most-commonly owned rifle in the United States; ban the magazines that come as standard in almost every newly purchased semi-automatic firearm; destroy gun manufacturers and dealers by repealing the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA); arbitrarily limit the number of guns an American citizen can buy per month; ban the online sale of ammunition and firearm parts and accessories and so much more.

    4. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is Scheduling Votes

    The word is that next week, the U.S. House of Representatives could vote on several gun-control bills, including a so-called “universal” background law (how can it be universal if criminals won’t abide by it.

    “According to reports from Capitol Hill, the Democrat-controlled U.S. House of Representatives plans to vote on two gun control bills as early as next week,” reported NRA-ILA. “The first bill, so-called ‘universal’ background check legislation, would criminalize the private transfer of firearms. The second bill, sometimes inaccurately described as legislation to close the ‘Charleston loophole,’ would undermine the Second Amendment right by permitting the federal government to delay a firearm transfer indefinitely without proof that the transferee is prohibited from possessing firearms.”

    We’ll keep you informed on this bill and whatever else the Biden administration attempts to do to your right to keep and bear arms.

  8. According to reports from Capitol Hill, the Democrat-controlled U.S. House of Representatives plans to vote on two gun control bills as early as next week. The first bill, so-called “universal” background check legislation, would criminalize the private transfer of firearms. The second bill, sometimes inaccurately described as legislation to close the “Charleston loophole,” would undermine the Second Amendment right by permitting the federal government to delay a firearm transfer indefinitely without proof that the transferee is prohibited from possessing firearms.

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    Criminalization of Private Firearm Transfers

    The 2021 House gun control agenda promises to include H.R. 8, introduced by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA), which purports to be a so-called “universal” background check bill. This legislation would make it a crime, subject to certain limited exceptions, to simply hand a firearm to another person. Any time gun owners carry out this simple act, they would potentially be exposing themselves to criminal penalties.

    The pandemic exposed dangers of private transfer restrictions

    At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic some jurisdictions that had criminalized the private transfer of firearms also shut down access to guns stores or their state criminal background check system. This lethal combination of misguided policies made it impossible for millions of Americans to exercise their Second Amendment rights by acquiring, or even borrowing or lending, firearms during the crisis.

    “Universal” background checks do not stop criminals

    According to the Department of Justice (DOJ), 75 percent of criminals in state and federal state prison who had possessed a firearm during their offense acquired the firearm through theft, “Off the street/underground market,” or “from a family member or friend, or as a gift.” Less than one percent got firearms from dealers or non-dealers at gun shows.

    Criminals also defeat the background check system by getting guns through straw purchasers. ATF has reported, “[t]he most frequent type of trafficking channel identified in ATF investigations is straw purchasing from federally licensed firearms dealers. Nearly 50 percent....”

    In 2013, the Department of Justice’s National Institute of Justice researched so-called “universal” background checks and determined that they would be not be effective without additional draconianfirearm restrictions and efforts to combat straw purchasing.

    In a 2018 study, researchers at the Bloomberg School of Public Health and the UC Davis School of Medicine found that comprehensive background checks and prohibitions based on violent misdemeanors “were not associated with changes in firearm suicide or homicide.”

    There is no “gun show loophole” or “online sales loophole”

    Federal law requires all firearm dealers to be licensed and to initiate a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check before transferring a firearm to a non-dealer, regardless of where the transfer takes place.

    There is no overwhelming support for “universal” background checks

    Gun control supporters claim that 92 percent of Americans support background checks on all firearm transfers. However, in November 2014, a background check ballot initiative in Washington was approved by only 59 percent of voters. In November 2016, Maine voters rejected a background check referendum by a margin of 52 to 48 percent, while Nevada voters narrowly adopted an unenforceable background check measure 50.45 to 49.55 percent.

    “Universal” background checks facilitate firearm registration

    NICS would become a gun owner registry if all firearms transfers were subject to NICS checks and the FBI retained records of approved checks indefinitely, both of which gun control supporters have proposed. Such records would include information currently maintained on federal Form 4473, documenting the identity of the firearm purchaser and the make, model and serial number of the firearm transferred. Over time, as people sell or bequeath their firearms, a registry of firearm transfers would become a registry of gun owners.

    Indefinite Firearm Purchase Delays

    The House 2021 gun control agenda also includes H.R. 1446, introduced by Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), which would allow unelected government bureaucrats the discretion to cause indefinite firearm purchase delays. The legislation would eliminate the current 3-day safety-valve provision under the federal firearms background check system that prevents the government from instituting an indefinite delay on firearm purchases for law-abiding Americans.

    All Federal Firearms Licensees (gun dealers) are required to conduct a background check on prospective purchasers to determine if transferring the firearm would violate state or federal law. Under current law, if an FFL initiates a background check, but does not receive a determination from NICS within three business days, the FFL may proceed with the firearm transfer. After the three-day window, the FBI continues to research the matter that gave rise to an individual’s delay for 90 days after the check was initiated. If it is later determined that the person is prohibited from possessing firearms, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is notified and tasked with retrieving the firearm.

    The current three-day safety-valve provision is vital and protects gun owners in numerous ways. The safety-valve provision ensures that if there is a disruption to NICS or an overwhelming volume of background checks, lawful firearm transfers from dealers can still take place. Most importantly, the safety-valve provision ensures that the FBI carries out its background check duties in an expedient and responsible manner that recognizes the right to keep and bear arms as a constitutionally-protected individual right.

    Absent this provision, the FBI would have less incentive to conduct NICS checks in a timely manner. Moreover, the agency would have free reign to indefinitely delay any transfers they deem undesirable - for whatever political or purported public policy purpose they could concoct. This would turn all firearms sales from dealers into something akin to may-issue licensing. Prospective gun buyers who are not prohibited from owning firearms by law could be denied by bureaucratic dictate through the form of an indefinite delay.

    NRA members and other freedom-loving Americans should stay tuned to NRAILA.org and NRA’s H.R. 8 website for updates on this legislation and for vital information on how to combat this threat to liberty.

  9. Since the Giffords Law Center has their own ranking for “states with the worst gun laws,” which, naturally enough, gives the lowest grades to the states which prize the Second Amendment — and with it, liberty; I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at some of the best states for firearms freedoms.

    Obviously this list is going to be subjective, and it’s far from the only one out there. Guns & Ammo has their own rankings, which are pretty solid, and for the most part, track with other score-cards across the industry — a few move around, but the top five or ten are remarkably consistent.

    Predictably, there’s not a lot to choose between the various states, so here’s my list of the best parts of “Free America.” (in no particular order)

    1. Arizona– The Grand Canyon State requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition. The state complies with the bare minimum of the NFA, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required.
    2. Kansas– The Sunflower State has no restrictions beyond those required by the NFA, requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Kansas has also abolished laws against so-called “switch blades.” All local regulations are preempted by state law, and concealed carry is permitted in most public buildings and on college campuses. Kansas also prevents state and local authorities from enforcing the NFA so long as the NFA item was made in Kansas and has it stamped on the item.
    3. Alaska This (still very much) frontier state requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition. The state complies with the bare minimum of the NFA, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Municipalities may enact and enforce local regs only if they are identical to state law — with the same penalties.
    4. Wyoming The Cowboy State has no restrictions beyond those required by the NFA, requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Like Kansas, Wyoming also restricts law enforcement from enforcing the NFA so long as the NFA item was made in Wyoming and has it stamped on the item. (In neither of these cases is it recommended someone build a full auto rifle or suppressor. This happened in Kansas and two men were arrested and are now federal felons.)
    5. Vermont A deep blue state in most respects, Vermont has allowed Constitutional Carry for the entirety of its history, the Vermont Constitution of 1777, dating well before the Bill of Rights, states: “That the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State – and as standing armies in time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military should be kept under strict subordination to and governed by the civil power.”  While Vermont has passed a few restrictions — to include a 10 round magazine ban for rifles and 15 for handguns, (which is currently under challenge) and does have a “red flag law,” and “universal” background checks  — suppressors are legal, no one from any state is restricted from open or concealed carry, nor does the state even issue a CCW permit. In fact, any person 16 or older (Federal law requires the age to be 18) and who can legally possess a firearm is allowed to carry openly or concealed. State law preempts local governments from regulating the possession, ownership, transfer, carrying, registration or licensing of firearms.

    I include Vermont in this list, despite deep, deep blue politics, because its gun laws (some restrictions aside) are remarkably free and it’s unclear just how much taste there is for enforcing those restrictions. Indeed, Vermont’s red flag law allows but does not require law enforcement or a judge to remove firearms from the scene of a domestic violence incident, or require the removal or surrender upon the issuance of a protection from abuse order. However, the Vermont State Supreme Court also recently upheld a ban on magazines, so things are moving in the wrong direction. I admit, this one may be more of a sentimental choice than anything else.   

    So there you have it, five of the most freedom-friendly states in the Union (or maybe 4 1/2). Interestingly Texas was not on this list, for — among other reasons — the fact that the state does require a permit for both open and concealed carry. The good news for gun owners, however, is that the competition for the most free state is getting tougher, especially with the Constitutional Carry revolution heating up in states like Utah, Montana, Indiana, Tennessee, and Alabama.  

  10. Since the Giffords Law Center has their own ranking for “states with the worst gun laws,” which, naturally enough, gives the lowest grades to the states which prize the Second Amendment — and with it, liberty; I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at some of the best states for firearms freedoms.

    Obviously this list is going to be subjective, and it’s far from the only one out there. Guns & Ammo has their own rankings, which are pretty solid, and for the most part, track with other score-cards across the industry — a few move around, but the top five or ten are remarkably consistent.

    Predictably, there’s not a lot to choose between the various states, so here’s my list of the best parts of “Free America.” (in no particular order)

    1. Arizona– The Grand Canyon State requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition. The state complies with the bare minimum of the NFA, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required.
    2. Kansas– The Sunflower State has no restrictions beyond those required by the NFA, requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Kansas has also abolished laws against so-called “switch blades.” All local regulations are preempted by state law, and concealed carry is permitted in most public buildings and on college campuses. Kansas also prevents state and local authorities from enforcing the NFA so long as the NFA item was made in Kansas and has it stamped on the item.
    3. Alaska This (still very much) frontier state requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition. The state complies with the bare minimum of the NFA, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Municipalities may enact and enforce local regs only if they are identical to state law — with the same penalties.
    4. Wyoming The Cowboy State has no restrictions beyond those required by the NFA, requires no permits to buy long guns, side arms, or ammunition, there are no restrictions on magazines, type of weapon (within the confines of the NFA) and there are no restrictions on open or concealed carry for anyone over the age of 21. Permits are available for reciprocity reasons, but are not required. Like Kansas, Wyoming also restricts law enforcement from enforcing the NFA so long as the NFA item was made in Wyoming and has it stamped on the item. (In neither of these cases is it recommended someone build a full auto rifle or suppressor. This happened in Kansas and two men were arrested and are now federal felons.)
    5. Vermont A deep blue state in most respects, Vermont has allowed Constitutional Carry for the entirety of its history, the Vermont Constitution of 1777, dating well before the Bill of Rights, states: “That the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State – and as standing armies in time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military should be kept under strict subordination to and governed by the civil power.”  While Vermont has passed a few restrictions — to include a 10 round magazine ban for rifles and 15 for handguns, (which is currently under challenge) and does have a “red flag law,” and “universal” background checks  — suppressors are legal, no one from any state is restricted from open or concealed carry, nor does the state even issue a CCW permit. In fact, any person 16 or older (Federal law requires the age to be 18) and who can legally possess a firearm is allowed to carry openly or concealed. State law preempts local governments from regulating the possession, ownership, transfer, carrying, registration or licensing of firearms.

    I include Vermont in this list, despite deep, deep blue politics, because its gun laws (some restrictions aside) are remarkably free and it’s unclear just how much taste there is for enforcing those restrictions. Indeed, Vermont’s red flag law allows but does not require law enforcement or a judge to remove firearms from the scene of a domestic violence incident, or require the removal or surrender upon the issuance of a protection from abuse order. However, the Vermont State Supreme Court also recently upheld a ban on magazines, so things are moving in the wrong direction. I admit, this one may be more of a sentimental choice than anything else.   

    So there you have it, five of the most freedom-friendly states in the Union (or maybe 4 1/2). Interestingly Texas was not on this list, for — among other reasons — the fact that the state does require a permit for both open and concealed carry. The good news for gun owners, however, is that the competition for the most free state is getting tougher, especially with the Constitutional Carry revolution heating up in states like Utah, Montana, Indiana, Tennessee, and Alabama.  

  11. Until the Great Gun Run of 2020, which was prompted by COVID stay-at-home orders, an increase in violent crime, and civil unrest after the death of George Floyd sparked riots in many American cities, I would have said that nothing creates a spike in gun sales like a sustained push for new gun control laws. When anti-gun politicians try to crack down on the supply of firearms, it typically ends up creating even more demand for them. That’s why Barack Obama was widely credited as being the gun salesman of the year in 2013, when his post-Sandy Hook push for new gun controls helped create what was at the time one of the biggest surges in gun sales in our nation’s history.

    We’ve seen something similar play out in my home state of Virginia, where Democrats took control of the legislature in 2019 and passed the first gun control laws in decades the following year. As the editors of the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star point out, the new gun laws on the books didn’t prevent a record-setting year for gun sales in the state.

    After seven gun control bills were passed by the General Assembly last April and signed into law by Gov. Ralph Northam, Virginians bought even more guns. According to the Virginia State Police’s Firearms Transaction Center, a record 587,107 background checks were conducted in the commonwealth in just the first nine months of 2020.

    It seems that the more lawmakers try to control guns, the more people buy them. But that didn’t stop state lawmakers from passing even more gun control bills this year.

    That’s true, though Democrats did shy away from trying to push Gov. Ralph Northam’s ban on modern sporting rifles, ammunition magazines, and suppressors this year, despite the governor proclaiming that that it would be a top priority for his administration in 2021.

    Instead, the Democrats in charge of the General Assembly restricted their gun control efforts to smaller agenda items in an attempt to avoid making gun control key issue in the statewide elections coming up this November.

    The Free Lance-Star has a full rundown of where the latest anti-gun proposals stand in the state legislature in its editorial, but their bottom line is simple: none of the new laws proposed by Democrats are going to make the state any safer, but they’re very likely to lead to new gun owners and increased gun sales.

    Last year, Gov. Northam preemptively fenced-off Capitol Square before what turned out to be a peaceful rally attended by thousands of armed Virginians in defense of their Second Amendment rights. This bill would prevent such a demonstration from ever happening again, and perhaps that’s the point, since opponents of the bill correctly point out that while it turns Capitol Square into another “gun-free zone” for law-abiding citizens, it does nothing to prevent armed criminals from entering the area.

     Passing more gun control laws may look like state legislators are “doing something” about gun violence. But if recent history is any indication, the result will just be more guns in the commonwealth.

    I think that’s a given. The Free Lance-Star should also have pointed out that, despite the new gun control laws put on the books last year, violent crime in Virginia actually increased instead of declining. Even worse, Virginia had one of the lowest crime rates in the nation before the Democrats passed their gun control legislation. As a public safety measure, their anti-gun agenda has only made things worse. As a promotion for gun sales, however, the gun control efforts of Democratic lawmakers have been a huge success.

  12. A frustrating aspect of the modern gun control movement is its seeming abandonment of reason. The same anti-gun politicians that attack the rights of law-abiding gun owners will advocate for more lenient treatment of those who misuse firearms to commit violent crime.

    Consider California’s Assembly Bill 1509, which would alter the state’s scheme of sentence enhancements for serious crimes committed with firearms. The legislative counsel’s digest summarized the changes as follows:

    Existing law imposes a sentence enhancement in the state prison of 10 years for personally using a firearm in the commission of specified felonies, 20 years for personally and intentionally discharging a firearm in the commission of those felonies, and 25 years to life for personally and intentionally discharging a firearm and causing great bodily injury or death to any other person during the commission of those felonies.

    This bill would reduce those enhancements to 1, 2, and 3 years, respectively. 

    Existing law imposes a sentence enhancement of 5, 6, or 10 years in the state prison for, with intent to inflict great bodily injury or death, discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle in the commission of a felony and inflicting great bodily injury or death in the commission of a felony.

    This bill would reduce that enhancement to 1, 2, or 3 years in the state prison.

    AB1509 was authored by Assemblymember Alex Lee (D-25). The bill was coauthored by Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo (D-51), Ash Kalra (D-27), Mark Stone (D-29), and Senator Scott Wiener (D-11).

    Assemblywoman Carrillo has been a vocal proponent of further restricting the rights of law-abiding gun owners. On May 17, 2018, Carrillo spoke at a gun control rally in Sacramento, put on, in part, by the Brady Campaign. The lawmaker took to Twitter on February 5, 2019 to boast of meeting Gabrielle Giffords of the eponymous Giffords gun control organization, adding, “California has enacted strict gun laws that can lead the way to a national conversation. We need action. #GunReformNow.”

    Similarly, Assemblymember Kalra has pushed for gun control. As a San Jose City councilmember, Kalra proposed an ordinance that would have required gun owners to comply with onerous storage requirements, ammunition sellers to register transactions, and re-victimized gun owners whose firearms were stolen by requiring them to report the theft within 48 hours. 

    In 2019, Senator Wiener advanced legislation to permanently ban gun shows at Daly City, Calif.’s Cow Palace. On August 31, 2019, the state senator took to Twitter to advocate for gun confiscation and other extreme gun controls, stating, 

    No more talk on guns

    Action only

    Ban assault weapons & mandate buyback of assault weapons

    Extend restrictions to ammo

    Universal background checks & waiting period

    And no more letting people carry weapons in public. Anywhere.

    Moreover, all of the coauthors have voted in favor of a raft of gun restrictions, including gun rationing, restrictions on gun shows, and a resolution urging the federal government to enact California-style gun control laws.

    Some will find it confusing that lawmakers who promote gun control as a means to reduce criminal violence would support more lenient penalties for those who actually use firearms to perpetrate violence. However, such confusion stems from a fundamental misunderstanding of the gun control agenda.

    Gun control is not about reducing violent crime or bolstering public safety, it is about using the power of government to indulge ugly political and cultural prejudices. These lawmakers’ seemingly paradoxical behavior underscores this fact.

  13. While several other states are passing permitless carry, Alabama seems to be once again refusing to allow it to have a floor vote. Alabama hasn’t had meaningful pro-gun legislation passed in over 6 years, but wants you to believe they are staunchly on your side. They do not believe citizens are entitled to their constitutional rights without paying for government permission.

    Please contact House leadership and House Public Safety Committee chair Rep. Treadaway and insist that they hear House Bill 405 in committee.

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    Please contact Senate leadership and Senate Judiciary Committee chair Sen. Whatley and insist that they schedule SB 5.

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    House Bill 405 and Senate Bill 5 allow a law-abiding adult to carry a concealed firearm in Alabama, without first needing to obtain government permission. This ensures that citizens have their right to self-defense without government red tape or delays. Additionally, they maintain the existing pistol permit system, so citizens who still wish to obtain a permit may do so.

    Again, please click the “Take Action” buttons above to support HB 405 and SB 5.

  14. The Virginia General Assembly adjourned sine die from its 2021 legislative session today. As a result of strong lobbying efforts by NRA and its members, along with other Second Amendment supporters, no legislation was even filed to ban commonly-owned firearms or magazines this session, despite that having been the centerpiece of the 2020 gun ban agenda. In addition, persistent lobbying by NRA all the way through today ensured that House Bill 2276 and Senate Bill 1250 did not leave the General Assembly, and are dead for the session.

    House Bill 2276 would have ended the centuries-old practice of manufacturing firearms for personal use by imposing requirements that far exceed those in federal law. It would have prohibited private individuals from possessing certain unregulated components commonly used by hobbyists to make their own firearms, as well as possessing firearms without serial numbers that are currently legal.  

    Senate Bill 1250 would have prohibited shooting ranges from renting firearms to customers for use on premises without first obtaining government permission with the same background check as required for a sale.

    Our efforts also ensured that law-abiding gun owners got one bill passed in their favor. The General Assembly passed House Bill 2310 to allow individuals who completed online firearms training prior to January 1st, 2021, but were prohibited from appearing in person at their circuit court clerk’s office due to COVID restrictions, to apply for a concealed handgun permit through April 30th, 2021. HB 2310 passed the Senate unanimously and the House by an overwhelming bipartisan majority. It will go into effect immediately, should Gov. Northam sign it.

    Unfortunately, the anti-gun majority did pass new infringements:

    House Bill 2081 prohibits firearms within 40 feet of a polling place. It dictates to private property owners what they must do with their property. While many polling locations in the Commonwealth are located in schools, which are already gun-free zones by law, others are located in venues that are private property. The bill contains no exemption for lawful concealed carry by license holders, and also does not mandate that polling places have security measures to actively keep criminals away, such as metal detectors and armed security.

    House Bill 2128 allows for a five business day delay to be imposed on firearm transfers. Virginia’s current law allows for a three business day delay for what is supposed to be an instant background check done by computers. This was considered appropriate to the technology level when it was created decades ago. It is also what federal law considers appropriate for firearm dealers in other states that use the federal NICS background check system.

    House Bill 2295 bans firearms from Capitol Square and any building or parking facility owned or leased by the Commonwealth, with exemptions for firearms stored in parked vehicles or carried in vehicles on roads. Capitol Square remains an arbitrary boundary of an open area where law-abiding citizens are disarmed, while zero measures are taken to prevent criminals from entering.

    Though the General Assembly has adjourned, it is critical that law-abiding gun owners remain involved in defending their rights during this critical year for Virginia. Please stay tuned to www.nraila.org and your email inbox for further updates.

  15. Today, the House Public Safety Subcommittee voted 2-1 to advance House Study Bill 254, which greatly improves self-defense in Iowa. The full House Public Safety Committee will hear HSB 254 tomorrow. Please contact committee members and ask them to SUPPORT HSB 254.

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    House Study Bill 254 allows a law-abiding adult to carry a concealed firearm, without first needing to obtain government permission. This ensures that citizens have their right to self-defense without government red tape or delays. In addition, it also adds the option for law-abiding citizens to pass a federal background check to acquire a handgun without obtaining a Permit to Acquire, ensures that public housing cannot deny Second Amendment rights to tenants, ensures that local governments cannot restrict lawful carrying of firearms, expands the types of training accepted for a Permit to Carry Weapons, and other Second Amendment provisions.

    Again, please contact committee members and ask them to SUPPORT HSB 254.

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