After a chaotic moment yesterday in the state capital of Richmond, and despite a massive rally of gun supporters, Virginia Liberal lawmakers commenced on the passing of enormous gun legislation bills in critical committees. Ironically, the Virginia State Judiciary Committee meeting was slated to begin at 8 a.m. but was delayed more than an hour thanks to long lines at security portals. Last week, Virginia lawmakers passed new legislation banning the lawful carrying of firearms in the capitol, office buildings, and surrounding property. As a result of the passing of the new regulations, lengthy delays led to the immediate annoyance of staffers and citizens. What is most concerning is that many reports surfaced stating that many Democrats were able to bypass the newly required security without being properly searched for firearms.
After the long security lines cleared, state Democrats added to the delay, demanding that an equal number of supporters and opponents of the gun bills be seated to counter the vast anti-regulation crowds in attendance. BearingArms reported that despite the Democrats’ attempt, it was immediately evident that the numbers opposed to the bills far outnumbered the gun control supporters. During the hearing, Democrats passed several gun-control laws out of the Judiciary Committee, some with some modifications.
Proposed SBs 12 and 70, which required background checks on all private transfers, were combined into one bill, and the language was modified to only include background checks on all private sales, not transfer. Sen. Dick Saslaw’s sweeping SB 16, which attacked guns, magazines, and suppressors, was struck from the record. However, Democrats focused on HB 961, like SB 16, that “allows” gun owners to maintain possession of their banned guns so long as the firearm is registered with the Virginia State Police. There was no change in the language of magazines that can “accept” 10 round or more or the possession of suppressors – both of which are tagged as “assault firearms,” and therefore, deemed illegal.
One of the more restrictive laws enacted was SB 69, which forbids gun owners from purchasing more than one handgun per month. Additionally, Democrats pushed through Red Flag legislation that would make it legal for local or state law enforcement to lawfully take possession of a citizen’s guns for no more reason that an anonymous or baseless accusation. Democrats are poised to take all these bills to the floor of the state Senate, with hope and purpose to get them all passed before Lobby Day brings thousands of gun owners to the state capitol on Monday, January 20th.
On Monday, the entire country will be watching as pro-gun owners rally in protest of these sweeping and socialistically restricting policies. Will this be the “2020 Shot Heard ‘Round the World?” While protestors illustrate that they do not wish violence during their demonstration on the 20th, it cannot be ignored that with such divisive action before them, the citizens of Virginia cannot help feeling that their fundamental freedom is being stripped from them. Richmond, once home to the Confederacy, maybe yet again a dividing line between America. The powder keg is set, will anyone light the match?
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