Virginia Senate Blocks Another Gun Bill Pushed By Democrats

Democrats took control of both legislative chambers in 2019, and also hold the governorship, so they decided to try to push through a slew of gun control bills.

So far that hasn’t worked out so well in a mostly rural state that has long supported gun rights.

Virginia lawmakers on Monday rejected another gun control bill that was proposed by Democrat Gov. Ralph Northam. The Senate Judiciary Committee rejected Northam’s bill that would make it a felony to “recklessly leave a loaded, unsecured firearm” in a way that endangers a minor.

“This bill will keep children safe from loaded, unsecured firearms. Like Gov. Northam’s other commonsense gun safety measures, it is something that everyone — including responsible gun owners — should support,” said Northam’s spokesman, Alena Yarmosky.

But two Democrats joined all Republicans on the committee to shoot down the bill. They cited concerns that law-abiding gun owners would be unfairly punished, Fox News reported.

Another measure that would ban so-called assault weapons like AR-15 rifles is also in danger of falling short. Some of Northam’s gun control measures have passed in the state’s Democratic-controlled General Assembly and lawmakers will hash out the differences between both chambers in the coming weeks.

Some of the bills include limiting handgun purchases to once a month; universal background checks on gun purchases; and a red flag bill that would allow authorities to temporarily take guns away from anyone deemed to be dangerous to themselves or others.

As Northam and Democrats have pushed gun control bills, thousands of gun-rights activists gathered in the state capital of Richmond last month. Northam declared a state of emergency days before the event, banning guns from the Capitol grounds.

Last month, lawmakers in the state Senate passed the first pair of bills in a wave of gun-control legislation that is set to come up for votes. One bill would restore the state’s previous one-handgun-a-month rule, while the second would allow local governments to ban guns in public buildings, parks and at permitted events — including political protests. The vote was straight party line, 21-19.



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