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WA – GUN POLITICS – Washington considers open carry ban at demonstrations

The open carry of guns and other weapons would be banned on the Capitol campus and at or near any public demonstration across Washington under a measure that received a remote public hearing Tuesday, with proponents calling it a common-sense measure amid heightened political divisions and opponents arguing it would infringe on constitutional gun rights. The sponsor of the bill, Democratic Sen. Patty Kuderer, told her fellow members of the Senate Law and Justice Committee that in light of events like the fatal shooting at a protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year as well as recent armed protests at the state Capitol that saw violence, the measure was needed “to ensure that weapons are not used to intimidate peaceful protesters or to increase the potential for lethal violence to occur.” Kuderer’s bill would prohibit people from carrying weapons, either on their person or in their vehicle, while attending a demonstration at a public place or while being within 1,0000 feet of a demonstration. It also prohibits openly carried weapons in the state Capitol or on the Capitol’s grounds. Violation of the law would be a gross misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $5,000, or both. She said she modeled it on a similar law enacted in Alabama.  [full article]


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