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Monday, January 5, 2009

Gun Ban Crowd Urges Lobbying for Gun Show Bill

This morning, Barbara King Hart, President of the Virginia Center for Public Safety, one of the gun control groups in Virginia, sent out a missive to the group's email list encouraging people to contact the Virginia Crime Commission and demand legislation to close the non-existent "Gun Show Loophole." In the email, Hart uses the same tired and worn out talking points of the gun banners by saying "an overwhelming majority of Commonwealth residents want to see the loophole closed." I can't remember a "majority" of Virginians clamoring for such a law.

Hart also wrote about the story told by Omar Samaha, the brother of Virginia Tech victim Reema Samaha, where he told the Crime Commission late last year that he was amazed to learn "how easy it was for him to buy handguns and assault weapons at a Virginia gun show—no questions asked." If you are not familiar with his story, he said he went to a gun show, found one or more private sellers that were offering handguns and semi-automatic firearms for sale, and bought them with no questions asked. He also said after completing the transactions, he went and turned the firearms over to the police.

On January 13, the Crime Commission will be making a recommendation to the General Assembly as to whether or not legislation should be proposed to address gun shows. Senator Ken Stolle has already stated that there is no way a bill aimed at the so-called "gun show loophole" will gain majority support from both parties on the commission but there may be support for legislation to define who is a dealer for purposes of private sales.

Virginia gun owners should contact commission members and politely tell them there is no need for a)legislation to close the so-called loophole because no loophole exists, and b)legislation to define dealers in Virginia is a solution in search of a problem and therefore also should not receive support from the commission.

Contact information for the commission members are as follows:

Delegate David B. Albo Chairman
Senator Kenneth W. Stolle Vice-Chairman8th District (Pro-rights)
The Honorable Robert F. McDonnell Attorney General (Pro-rights)
Delegate Robert B. Bell 58th District (Pro-rights)
Mr. Glenn R. Croshaw Gubernatorial Appointee
Senator Janet D. Howell 32nd District
Delegate Terry G. Kilgore 1st District (Pro-rights)
Senator Henry L. Marsh 16th District
Delegate Kenneth R. Melvin 80th District
Delegate Brian J. Moran 46th District
Delegate Beverly J. Sherwood 29th District (Pro-rights)
The Honorable Richard E. Trodden Arlington Commonwealth's Attorney

Remember, we only need to make sure that legislation does not receive support from the majority of both parties represented (meaning a majority of Republicans and a majority of the Democrats must support the recommendation). I have listed which members have pro-rights voting records.

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