A new bill aims to ban anyone on a federal terrorism watch list from purchasing a firearm in Wyoming.
The bill is being sponsored by Republican state Senator James Anderson. According to the Casper Star Tribune, Anderson asked the bill be drafted after hearing a presentation on the subject at a legislative committee meeting last year.
“We need to do something about people who are going to attack us getting weapons to do it,” he said.
The bill, or Senate File 75, would prohibit anyone “currently named on the consolidated terrorist watch list maintained by the terrorist screening center of the Federal Bureau of Investigation” from purchasing a firearm in Wyoming.
Many Second Amendment advocates argue that such a bill strips citizens of their constitutional right without proper due process – something Anderson recognizes and is currently struggling with.
On the one hand, Anderson says that those on a terrorist watch list are there for a reason.
“I don’t happen to believe that the military and the police state would make those many mistakes,” he told the Casper Star Tribune.
However, Anderson also noted, “The problem is some of these guys are not convicted of anything, so that’s kind of a problem when you start talking about somebody who’s not convicted and pulling his rights.”
Anderson seemingly understands the faults in his bill and admitted that it isn’t ready for “prime time,” as he put it. It will likely not come up for a vote this session, he said.
If nothing else, Anderson hopes the bill will spark greater discussion on the issue.
“We need to do something about this nationwide. But maybe it isn’t state-by-state,” he concluded.