Members of Attorney General Andrea Campbell’s office and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security covered the intricacies of firearms, including describing different parts of weapons to senators, Senate Majority Leader Cindy Creem told reporters on her way out of the meeting.
The private discussion took place only days after Senate President Karen Spilka said the chamber would offer up its own firearms-related reform bill by the end of January, a response to a proposal the House approved last year after some controversy.
Creem said it was still too early in the process to identify top priorities that could be included in a Senate gun reform package, but ticked off tackling ghost guns and the process for converting a semi-automatic firearm into an automatic weapon.
“We’ve learned there’s just so much crime out there and it’s scary and if we could get rid of all the violence, that would be great,” she said. “But … I don’t have a bill yet. I’m still in the thinking (phase),” Creem said.
A spokesperson for the Executive Office of Public Safety referred questions to Spilka’s office, which said senators “heard from the Attorney General’s Office and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, who shared information on firearm issues and gun safety, as the Senate continues to craft gun safety legislation.”
Creem said the discussion offered members a chance to get information on different firearms-related phrases and gun safety. The presentations by state officials “have been some time coming” after lawmakers expressed interest, Creem said.
“There were a lot of members in the Senate who wanted to have an opportunity to not take positions but they were members, like I was to begin with, that didn’t know what a Glock switch was, what’s a frame,” Creem said.
I appreciate that legislators are trying to educate themselves on the issue before crafting legislation, but relying on employees of an anti-gun attorney general and governor to provide that instruction isn’t exactly a great way to do so. Groups like the Gun Owners Action League can provide another perspective or additional information that those officials may be clueless about, like the lack of publicly accessible ranges and the training bottleneck that will inevitably ensue if the live-fire mandate becomes law, but in Massachusetts many lawmakers simply don’t hear what GOAL and other 2A organizations have to say.
Even if they want to ignore groups like GOAL, they might still find it harder to brush off concerns from their constituents, and Harris says it’s not too early for gun owners to reach out to their senators and House members ahead of the official unveiling of the Senate bill. We’ll be welcoming the GOAL folks back to Cam & Co in the very near future, but if you want to stay up to date on the latest legislative attacks against our right to keep and bear arms, sign up for the group’s email alerts at GOAL.org.