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New York: Lawmakers Wrap Up Their “Closed” 2021 Regular Session


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Virtually nothing has been “open” in New York for over a year, including the work of politicians in Albany.  For months, lawmakers have huddled in obscurity, working on legislation at a Statehouse which remained shuddered to the public for the duration.  Fortunately, late last week, the New York Legislature wrapped up its regular 2021 session, and it's that annual time of year when law-abiding gun owners can release a cautious sigh of relief and assess the damage.  This session, the shadow cast by COVID afforded them some useful cover while trampling on the rights of law-abiding New Yorkers.

Several gun control bills were passed this session.  New York already has some of the harshest gun laws in the country, so much of what they did was limited to simply pandering to their hard Left base.  For example, two bills that passed, S.13A and S.14A, dealt with “ghost guns,” an invented term.  What these bills actually do is go after hobbyists; they will have zero impact on the crime that is currently ravaging the state.  Other asinine bills that were adopted include a couple of toy gun bills (S.7152 and S.687) and a bill that establishes a firearm violence research institute (S.2981) – in other words, a taxpayer funded propaganda department.

Anti-gun politicians also defied federal law, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects the industry against frivolous lawsuits, by passing S.7196/A.6772.  This legislation declares gun violence a public nuisance and scapegoats gun dealers rather than holding actual criminals responsible.  In all, over a dozen gun bills were passed through at least one chamber. 

In a bit of good news, S.4116/A7926 (microstamping) failed to advance in either chamber despite coming out of committee.  This “technology” is completely unworkable and would amount to nothing more than a ban on the sale of new, traditional handguns.   Another bad bill which failed to advance was S.1235 which would have created a 10-day waiting period to transfer a firearm.  While this bill passed the Senate, the Assembly failed to adopt it.  This legislation was so outrageous that it was one of the few gun control bills that actually had bipartisan opposition. 

Despite the sinking ship in Albany, NRA-ILA will fight these battles until the bitter end.  Thank you to all the NRA members who responded to our alerts and called their legislators to express opposition.  Please continue to watch these alerts for the latest news.  In the coming months, the NRA-supported case NYSRPA v. Corlett will be heard by the Supreme Court of the United States.  This case is challenging New York’s failure to recognize self-defense outside the home by requiring a showing of “proper cause” for issuance of concealed carry permits.  This important case could have widespread implications for the Second Amendment in New York and beyond.   

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