Saturday, January 3, 2015

Fight on Guns Is Being Taken to State Ballots

Gov. Terry McAuliffe of Virginia has proposed the restoration of the state’s limit on handgun sales to one a month. 
CreditMolly Riley/Associated Press
The New York Times

The gun control movement, blocked in Congress and facing mounting losses in federal elections, is tweaking its name, refining its goals and using the same-sex marriage movement as a model to take the fight to voters on the state level.

After a victory in November on a Washington State ballot measure that will require broader background checks on gun buyers, groups that promote gun regulations have turned away from Washington and the political races that have been largely futile. Instead, they are turning their attention — and their growing wallets — to other states that allow ballot measures.

An initiative seeking stricter background checks for certain buyers has qualified for the 2016 ballot in Nevada, where such a law was passed last year by the Legislature and then vetoed by the governor. Advocates of gun safety — the term many now use instead of “gun control” — are seeking lines on ballots in Arizona, Maine and Oregon as well.

“I can’t recall ballot initiatives focused on gun policy,” said Daniel Webster, the director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research. “There wasn’t the money.” Colorado and Oregon approved ballot measures on background checks at gun shows after the Columbine school massacre in 1999, but the movement stalled after that.


  1. Has anyone looked to see if the law proposed by the Arizona Initiative mimics the Washington State law that recently passed? Are we going to be seeing the potential for loans of firearms requiring a background check?
    I also wonder what will happen if the court challenge to Washington's law is successful. It would also be interesting to see one of these initiatives fail. Much like a good number of their political candidates failed to deliver the needed votes.
    Gov. MaAullife has a challenge ahead of him considering he now has neither the House or Senate in his state under his party's control.

  2. As long as we allow States to set regulations on federal rights we will be constantly at odds. It's to bad.