They haven’t even been seated in Olympia yet for the upcoming legislative session and already anti-gun lawmakers are taking aim at firearm-owning residents. And with the House, Senate and Governor’s Office all in the hands of liberal Democrats, rural residents should be very concerned about the upcoming session.
Senate Bills 5444 and 5463 are key measures to watch in the upcoming one-party rule government in Olympia. Democrats said as much Tuesday when party leadership said it will be taking aim at the current rights of gun owners.
Introduced last year, Senate Bill 5444 calls for a permit system to own a so-called “assault rifle.” It would also require a permit to have a clip capable of carrying more than 10 rounds for any firearm. Permits would have to be renewed annually. Failure to do so would be a Class C felony.
And that’s just the start.
The measure, if signed into law, would strip some young adults of the right to purchase a firearm of their choice based solely on its appearance. Current state law allows anyone over age 18 to purchase a rifle. The measure would raise that minimum age to 21 for rifles dressed up to look like a military-grade weapon.
These efforts are nothing more than an attempt to establish a gun-owner registry. Once a gun owner registers for a permit, the state will have a permanent record of the kind of firearm you have and how many rounds you may carry.
Then there’s Senate Bill 5463, which would allow prosecuting attorneys statewide to charge gun owners with a felony if they let anyone they characterize as an “unauthorized” person to use a gun or displays it publicly. If that measure passes, you better not take a hunting trophy photo if you’ve dressed up your gun with some military-looking cosmetics.
These measures are top of the usual attempt to classify semi-automatic rifles as “assault weapons” just because they have a stock or scope styled after the military. Then there’s the attempts to strip anyone with any alleged domestic violence history of their constitutional right to keep and bear arms, the effort to take guns from anyone alleged to have a mental health issue, etc.
While these attempts are nothing new, the election of new Sen. Manka Dhingra, D-Woodinville, means the Legislature clearly has an anti-gun majority this year. Dhingra, who was born in India and ran on a mostly anti-gun platform, replaced pro-gun Sen. Dino Rossi, a Republican who believes in the constitutional right to keep and bear arms.
With her election, the Senate returns to Democratic control, leaving us wondering when — not if — lawmakers will muster the strength to pull the trigger on unconstitutional gun-control efforts that go way too far.