Virginia Gun Bills Head To Northam's Desk

The 2020 legislative session has concluded in Richmond, and while gun owners can be pleased that the centerpiece of Gov. Ralph Northam’s proposal didn’t make it to his desk, unfortunately every other piece of his gun control agenda did pass the legislature in some form or fashion and will soon be signed into law.

Joining me on today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co. is David Adams, legislative affairs director for the Virginia Shooting Sports Association, who not only breaks down specifics about the final language in each of the gun control bills, but also talks a little about the inevitable litigation that will follow soon after Gov. Ralph Northam signs his bills into law.

In the grand scheme of things, the bills aren’t as bad as they could have been, but that doesn’t mean they’re any good. Take concealed carry, for example. Senate Democrats introduced a bill removing online training as an option for those applying for their concealed carry license. House Democrats went much further and took away any NRA-certified firearms safety course in addition to online training. After a tussle in conference committee, the bill emerged largely in line with the state Senate version. It’s still a step backwards, but it’s a smaller step than what the House wanted.

On the other hand, the “red flag” bill sent to Northam is a lot closer to the House version than the one offered by the state Senate, which would have required the approval of two law enforcement officers and the commonwealth’s attorney before a petition could be filed with a court. Instead, the final red flag bill allows for a single law enforcement officer to file for a “substantial risk petition” and still relies on ex parte hearings and an incredibly low evidentiary standard to confiscate firearms from individuals.

Check out the entire interview above for a closer look at several other anti-gun bills that will soon become law, including “one-gun-a-month” and a bill targeting the state’s firearm preemption law. And stick around afterwards for today’s recidivist report, an armed citizen story from southern California, and a good deed of the day from Muscatine, Iowa.