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Posted: 5/30/2001 3:35:24 PM EDT
That's what my local gun shop here in Mass said but I don't think he's right.
Link Posted: 5/30/2001 3:49:06 PM EDT
The senate passed the ban, on Thursday night, but it still has to go to the house and then to the governor. I was at the capitol yesterday, and our lobbyist was optimistic that it would never reach the house floor. This bill is a lose/lose situation for all of the reps, no matter how the vote goes. His (the lobbyist's) feeling was that the house doesn't want to risk trying a vote on it. I will post more when I know more.
Link Posted: 5/30/2001 3:53:20 PM EDT
Here's the text of my letter to my local paper. It will give you some history: Under cover of darkness, and using slight of hand that would make Merlin proud, our state senate voted to pass a new "assault" weapons ban on Thursday evening, May 25th. This should not only concern owners of semi-automatic rifles, but all citizens because of the manner in which this bill was passed. The bill, authored by senators Jepsen (D- District 27 ), Penn (D- District 23), Nickerson (D - District 36) and endorsed by Attorney General Blumenthal received thorough scrutiny at a Public Safety Committee hearing back on March 20th, 2001, and died in committee, because of a lack of support. During the hearing, the Public Safety Commissioner, Arthur L. Spada, was asked by a panel member if the State Police have seen any increase in the use of the firearms in question, in the commission of crimes, to which he replied "No." after consulting with an aide. His answer was followed by a loud round of applause (started by yours truly) since it was the one and only bit of truth spoken by a public servant up to that point in the day. Another panel member scolded those of us in attendance, and stated that we would be removed from the hearing if we continued to applaud the truth. Senator Jepsen and Attorney General Blumenthal both testified before the committee, and neither was able to offer any evidence that semi-automatic rifles are increasingly being used in crimes. Blumenthal said that he had spoken with several police chiefs, all of whom are "good men", in his words, and that they think the ban is a good idea. That was their strongest argument for the ban, that a couple of "good men" think it's a good idea. There were more than three hundred "good men" at the hearing, to oppose this bill, many of whom provided testimony that included facts and figures to prove that these rifles are not a danger to the public at large. (continued)
Link Posted: 5/30/2001 3:54:06 PM EDT
After the hearing, the committee decided not to vote to bring the bill before the senate, because a majority on the committee did not support the bill. It was reported that the bill was dead. Those of us that own some of these rifles rejoiced! We would not be made instant criminals by our legislature! We won this battle, or so we thought. Friday morning, May 26th, our bubble burst. News spread on the internet like lightning! The senate passed SB 1402, AN ACT CONCERNING A SINGLE STATE HANDGUN PERMIT, except they removed the portion of the bill concerning that permit, and replaced it with the full text of the "assault" weapons ban. I don't know if we are the first state in which this happened, but this has to be one of the most uniquely titled semi-automatic rifle bans in the country. Ignoring all of the testimony against this bill at the public hearing, the senate, at an hour approaching midnight, without any public debate, passed the Penn/Jepsen semi-auto rifle ban, calling it "An act concerning a single state handgun permit." This should outrage all of the citizens of Connecticut, not just gun owners. It should make us all wonder what other kinds of garbage bills have been passed with innocent sounding names. Most sportsman and gun owners groups had endorsed SB1402, when it was an act concerning a single state handgun permit. Most of the newsletters and correspondence with legislators and senators sent by these groups, asked that this bill be supported. It is a known fact that most representatives cannot read and comprehend all of the legislation that is written during any given session. There is simply too much of it, and it would be humanly impossible to do so. Our representatives rely on us to understand the bills we support and oppose, and use our input to decide how to vote. A lot of senators may have seen the support for SB 1402 coming from their constituents, and voted accordingly, not realizing that the bill in no way resembled the version that we asked them to support. As of this writing, the bill is being considered by the house or representatives for passage. It is imperative that everyone contact his or her legislator, and ask that he/she oppose this slight of hand, and any others like it which may occur in the future. The senators guilty of this type of misdeed will only continue this practice if we let them get away with it.
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