House Republicans carry bills pushing limits on gun laws

The House of Delegates passed HB 705 (Gilbert) on Monday, largely on a party-line vote, that would eliminate important requirements for an out-of-state concealed handgun permit to be recognized in Virginia.

state-capitol2This comes less than a week after passing HB 878 (LaRock) that would remove local law enforcement’s discretion to approve class 3 firearms purchases, even if they have reason to believe the purchaser may commit a crime. The definition of “firearm” in this bill includes machine guns, rifles and shotguns of a certain length, weapons made from certain rifles or shotguns, silencers, and destructive devices. In federal code, “destructive devices” include: any explosive, incendiary, or poison gases; bombs; grenades; rockets having a propellant charge of more than 4 ounces; missiles having an explosive charge of more than 1/4 ounce; and mines.

HB 878 will remove discretion from local authorities during the transfer of firearms such as machine guns and silencers,” said Delegate Eileen Filler-Corn. “Even ‘destructive devices’ such as mortars and grenades fall within the definition of ‘firearms’ in this bill. It is important that we debate these bills, especially when law enforcement groups do not support or actively oppose their passage.”

“We continue to see more and more of this extreme legislation that goes far beyond 2nd Amendment protections,” said Democratic House Leader David Toscano. “We hope that these measures will ultimately be defeated either in the House or the Senate.”

Other gun bills Republican Delegates have sponsored are: HB 43 (Marshall, R), preventing state agencies from assisting in the enforcement of new federal firearms laws; HB 639 (Campbell), allowing people to carry a concealed handgun without a permit;HB 317 (Berg), allowing concealed handguns at airport terminals; HB 644 (Campbell), issuing lifetime concealed handgun permits that do not expire (currently they must be renewed every 5 years); and HB 1266 (LaRock), machine guns owned by trust.


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