Lawmakers On Gun Legislation Want To Hear From You
Public comment on two gun bills will be heard next week and Washington State lawmakers on both sides of the aisle want you to take part.
Senator Shelly Short with Washington's 7th legislative district opposes both bills, saying they're anti-second amendment, particularly House Bill 1240 which aims to ban the sale of assault weapons.
"Firearms that you own today in your homes right now will qualify as assault weapons. It is the most ridiculously broad bill I've ever seen." Senator Short said.
The public will also get a chance to comment on House Bill 1143 which strives to enhance requirements for the purchase or transfer of firearms.
Senator Short says the proposal to increase background checks and registries sounds nice, but what about legislation that's tough on crime.
"There's even a bill in the legislature today introduced in the House that if you are a criminal and you use a gun in a condition of a violent crime, you do not spend additional time in prison for that. Let that sink in," Short said. "So as we talk about decriminalizing drugs and all of the different things we have going on with public safety in our communities and rampant crime, these bills, do not help, they hurt, please, please get involved."
Supporters of gun legislation say people are getting involved. A Crosscut/Elway poll conducted in late December shows 58% of voters statewide favor a ban on the sale or transfer of semiautomatic rifles.
State Attorney General Bob Ferguson says the State House put public safety above the interest of the gun lobby by moving the bill forward.
“The devastation of mass shootings extends far beyond the casualties and injuries. Mass shootings traumatize entire communities. We must stop selling these weapons of war in Washington.” Ferguson said.
If you would like your voice to be heard, the Senate Committee on Law and Justice has scheduled public hearings on both measures March 23rd. Simply go to the Washington State Legislature's Committee Sign In Page to start the process of signing up for public comment.
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