Ban on assault weapons sales advances in Virginia

Ban on assault weapons sales advances in Virginia

Gun Rights

RICHMOND — A bill banning the sale of assault-style weapons and possession of high-capacity magazines cleared a House committee Friday, drawing such an angry reaction from gun-rights activists that the chairman had Capitol Police clear the room. Brought by Del. Mark Levine (D-Alexandria), the measure would prohibit the sale or transfer of those firearms after Jan. 1. The legislation initially would have banned possession of the weapons, forcing owners to give them up. But the House Public Safety Committee modified it to prohibit only sales and transfers. Anyone who legally owns those guns before Jan. 1 would be allowed to keep them. The measure takes a harder line on magazines that hold more than 12 rounds and bump stocks, banning sales and possession. Bump stocks, an attachment that makes a gun fire more rapidly, are already subject to a federal ban. “As an army doctor, Governor Northam has seen firsthand what weapons of war do to a human body,” Alena Yarmosky, spokeswoman for Gov. Ralph Northam (D), said in a statement. “This bill will save lives in Virginia, and the Governor is glad to see it advance.” The assault-weapons bill is perhaps the most controversial part of an eight-bill package of gun-control legislation that Northam backed after a shooter killed 12 people in a Virginia Beach municipal building on May 31. Democrats won control of the state House and Senate on a promise to enact sweeping gun control , including universal background checks and a purchase limit of one […]

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