Washington Gov. Jay Inslee appears to be going full tilt against guns, with an announcement that he will sign a bill banning bump stocks and a report that, as chair of the Democratic Governors Association, he is telling his party’s candidates to push for several items on the gun control agenda in 2018.
Inslee is being eyed by some as a possible presidential or vice presidential candidate in 2020, and he is assuming a larger national posture as the governors association chairman.
According to Politico, Inslee “wants his candidates to learn hard into pushing for restrictions on magazine size, banning bump stocks, raising the minimum age for buying assault rifles—and make it into an argument for states doing what Trump and the Republicans in Washington haven’t.”
“It comes down to Democratic governors who are standing up for action and the Republicans who are standing in the courthouse door just taking orders from the NRA,” Inslee said, according to Politico.
He accused Republicans of “kowtowing to Donald Trump.”
Inslee, on the other hand, was openly defiant and somewhat brash several days ago when he disagreed with the idea of arming school teachers as a first line of defense against school shooters.
“We need to do a little less tweeting and a little more listening” to teachers, Inslee said.
His demeanor was “obnoxious” according to one reader of The Stranger, an alternative newspaper in Seattle, while another suggested he could “spend a little less time giving advice to the federal government and little more time figuring out how to fund education in Washington State.
The bump stock ban would take effect in July with a prohibition on sales or manufacture of the devices, and in July of next year it would become illegal to own one.
Bump stocks became the target du jour of the gun prohibition lobby after the Las Vegas mass shooting Oct. 1, 2017. Prior to that, it was unlikely that most people had even heard of them outside of the firearms community.
But the bump stock became a symbol, and banning them is a symbolic victory that may not have any impact on Washington State homicide statistics. Only 2 to 3 percent of homicides in the state traditionally involve rifles of any kind, including the semi-autos to which bump stocks are attached.
In the wake of the Florida high school shooting on Valentine’s Day, Seattle gun prohibitionists have pulled out all the stops to push their agenda, which includes “enhanced background checks” on modern sporting rifles, and anything else they might get through the Legislature, which adjourns later this week.