Gun Control Bills Still Inching Forward In VA Legislature

Last week, Gov. Ralph Northam’s sweeping gun ban bill died in the Senate Judiciary Committee when four Democrats joined Republicans in referring the legislation to the state’s Crime Commission instead of sending the bill to the floor for a vote. Gun owners were hoping for a repeat performance as the Judiciary Committee took up a number of gun control bills Monday morning, but unfortunately the same senators who voted against the gun ban voted in favor of red flag legislation, one-gun-a-month rationing, and more.

Phillip Van Cleave of the Virginia Citizens Defense League joins me on today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co. to break down the latest language in the gun control bills, which still differ in some respects from the versions passed by the House of Delegates. That means that many of the bills will be heading to a conference committee comprised of members of both chambers, where the two sides will try to craft some sort of compromise language. A simply majority will suffice to bring the reworked bills to the floor of both House and Senate, and any bill that passes both chambers would then go on to Northam’s desk for his signature.

Van Cleave says he’s hopeful that a few of the proposals can be tied up in that conference committee, though I wouldn’t say he or any other Second Amendment advocates are particularly confident that will happen. The question now seems to be which side will prevail; the Senate with its slightly less onerous versions, or the House with its more draconian measures.

I’d love to be able to say that the Senate will prevail, thanks to the four Democrats that have expressed opposition to or have voted against a few of Northam’s gun control measures, but I have a sneaking suspicion that many of them will want to prove that they’re still on the side of “common sense gun reform” by agreeing to at least a few bills that large embrace the language adopted by the House. It’s absolutely critical that lawmakers are hearing from their constituents right now. With less than two weeks left in the legislative session bills are going to be moving quickly, and we need to keep up the pressure. Van Cleave says gun owners have already made a difference this session, but we can’t let up yet.

Also on today’s show, we have the story of a would-be robber who brought a knife to a gun fight in Wisconsin, a New York man arrested twice in one night thanks to the state’s new bail reform law, and a New Hampshire police department who went above the call of duty when they got a call about a World War II veteran without heat on an cold winter’s day.

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Jun 25, 2022 12:30 PM ET