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Tipsheet

Democrat Governor, AG Urge Lawmakers to Pass Several Gun Control Measures

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Democrat Gov. Jay Inslee in Washington announced this week that his office will urge lawmakers to pass gun control measures to ban certain kinds of firearms and “ensure firearms industry faces consequences for irresponsible practices.”

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According to a press release from Inslee’s office, one of the measures he is requesting is a “common-sense” ban of military-style assault weapons. The second is a proposal that would make gun manufacturers “responsible” for preventing their products from being obtained by violent individuals. 

Several polls in the state have shown that residents support other kinds of gun control legislation, according to the press release:

A July poll, sponsored by The Seattle Times, KING 5, the University of Washington’s Center for an Informed Public and Washington State University’s Murrow College of Communication, found that more than 60 percent of Washingtonians support a ban on assault weapons in the state. More Washingtonians supported a ban than opposed it on both sides of the Cascades, the poll found.

A poll released in June performed by Public Policy Polling for the Northwest Progressive Institute similarly found that 56 percent of Washington voters support a ban on the sale of assault weapons.

In the last decade, Washington state voters have overwhelmingly backed common-sense firearms safety laws proposed as statewide initiatives. Since 2014, voters have approved initiatives closing background check loopholes (nearly 60 percent of the vote), creating extreme risk protection orders (more than 70 percent) and raising the age to purchase and mandating enhanced background checks for semi-automatic rifles, as well as creating safe storage standards (nearly 60 percent).

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“All businesses should be held accountable for harm that they cause, both intentional harm — like flooding the market with more firearms that can be reasonably sold by licensed dealers — or unintentional harm caused by irresponsible business practices,” State Rep. David Hackney, a Democrat, said.

According to The Olympian, Inslee is also a proponent of “permit-to-purchase” legislation on guns. This would require a person to have a permit in order to buy a gun.

“You need to get a license to drive a car in the state of Washington, you need to get a license to go fishing, it’s time that you get a license to make sure that you have safety training to purchase a gun in the state of Washington,” Inslee told reporters. “It’s high time that we pass a bill to make sure that you get a permit before you purchase a firearm.”

The news from Washington comes after Oregon voters narrowly passed an extreme gun control measure in the midterm elections. 

As Townhall covered,  Oregon's Measure 114 would require a permit and hands-on safety training and fingerprinting provided by law enforcement to buy a gun and prohibit the sale of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammo. It would not be illegal to own a gun without a permit, but a permit would be required by law to purchase one.

However, one sheriff in the state, Linn County Sheriff Michelle Duncan, has been outspoken about the fact that she will not enforce aspects of the law. 

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"I can't put handcuffs on someone knowing that there is this black cloud around the constitutionality of that magazine capacity limit," Linn County Sheriff Michelle Duncan said in an interview on Fox News’ "America Reports" this month. "The permitting, we'll have to do what we can for our citizens to make sure that they can still exercise their Second Amendment right."

After the measure passed in the election, gun sales in the state skyrocketed and a Second Amendment group filed a lawsuit to stop it from taking effect. The measure is halted for the time being. 

“We’ve seen the statistics that most crimes involving guns that criminals commit, they’re not obtaining those firearms legally anyway,” Duncan said in the interview. 

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