VA Committee Approves Gun Bills On Party Line Vote

After a chaotic morning at the state capitol in Richmond, and despite huge turnout from thousands of gun owners, Virginia Democrats approved a number of gun control bills in a key committee hearing Monday.

The Senate Judiciary Committee meeting was supposed to begin at 8 a.m., but was delayed more than an hour thanks to the long lines to get in the doors of the capitol. New rules banning the lawful carrying of firearms in the capitol and office buildings led to new security measures, which in turn led to lengthy delays and annoyed staffers and citizens. Meanwhile, some Democrat staffers were apparently able to bypass the required security.

After folks cleared the long security line, they were then told that Democrats were requiring an equal number of supporters and opponents of the gun bills to be seated in the committee room, despite the fact that those opposed to the bills far outnumbered gun control supporters…………

Meanwhile SB 16, Sen. Dick Saslaw’s sweeping gun, magazine, and suppressor ban, was struck from the record, which means there will be no further action on the bill. Instead, Democrats will focus their efforts on HB 961, a slightly modified version of Saslaw’s legislation that “allows” gun owners to maintain possession of their banned firearms if they register them with the Virginia State Police. The ban on magazines that can accept more than 10 rounds, as well as lawfully purchased suppressors, remains in the House version of the so-called “assault firearms” bill.