Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam recently unveiled his gun control scheme for 2019, convincing gun owners in the “Old Dominion” that Democrats are not simply after the guns, they’re after the right that enables citizens to have guns.
His package will, according to his press release, “require universal background checks; establish an Extreme Risk Protective Order; reinstate Virginia’s One Handgun a Month law; prohibit individuals subject to final protective orders from possessing firearms; ban assault firearms; prevent children from accessing firearms; and require individuals to report lost or stolen firearms to law enforcement.”
The National Shooting Sports Foundation quickly proclaimed that the legislation “would put most firearms beyond the reach of law-abiding Virginians who choose the firearms of their choice to protect themselves, hunt, and practice recreational target shooting.”
The National Rifle Association, which is headquartered in Fairfax, is promising to fight the Northam package, as is the Virginia Citizens Defense League.
NRA spokesperson Catherine Mortensen told the Washington Free Beacon, “Virginians want elected officials to address the root causes of violent crime and find solutions that will save lives instead of pursuing gun-control policies that criminals will not follow and will make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves.”
Philip Van Cleave, VCDL president, asserted that, “None of the gun bills that Governor Northam is pushing will make Virginians any safer. But they would go a long way into turning law-abiding Virginia citizens into inadvertent criminals.”
The push against gun rights is not isolated to Virginia, either. In Oregon, state Sen. Rob Wagner is sponsoring SB 501, which would require people to get a permit to buy a gun, establish a 14-day waiting period, ban so-called “large capacity magazines” that can hold more than 5 rounds and limit ammunition purchases to no more than 20 rounds in a 30-day period. Wagner is also a Democrat, further reinforcing the widely-held belief that his is the “party of gun control,” and that they are no longer trying to hide the fact that they want to make exercising Second Amendment rights as difficult and discouraging as possible.
North of the Columbia River, Washington Democrats – emboldened by their victories in November, along with passage of gun control Initiative 1639 – are essentially throwing everything they can at the wall to see what sticks. One Republican lawmaker, state Sen. Phil Fortunato, threw a counter-punch of sorts Monday when he sponsored a bill that would require any state legislator proposing gun legislation to first take a gun safety course and pass a test. His measure is SB7152.
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