Gillette lawmaker pulls firearm reporting bill amid pushback from gun rights group

Gillette lawmaker pulls firearm reporting bill amid pushback from gun rights group

AR-15 style rifles made by Battle Rifle Co., a gunmaker in Webster, Texas, are on display in March 2017 in its retail shop. A Gillette lawmaker has pulled legislation proposing new regulations on firearm purchases in Wyoming, blaming a “false narrative” that he said “grossly mischaracterizes the intent and implications of this bill.” In a news release Thursday afternoon, Rep. Bill Pownall — the former Campbell County sheriff — announced he would be withdrawing a bill that would update current regulations for individuals disqualified from gun ownership due to their mental health, a change that essentially would have provided due process to those disqualified from gun ownership. However, the bill quickly drew comparisons to a separate piece of mental health adjudication considered earlier this year by the Joint Judiciary Committee called the “Fix NICS” bill , which proposed certain updates to the state’s mental health reporting guidelines to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. Some — like the hard-line gun rights group Wyoming Gun Owners — compared it to a “red flag” law, prompting backlash from their membership. “WYGO members: Rep. Pownall just pulled Fix-NICS because of you! This is why we fight the way we do! Well freaking done!” a Thursday night Facebook post from the organization read. Pownall did not immediately respond to a phone message seeking comment Friday morning. For weeks, groups like Wyoming Gun Owners have lobbied hard against Pownall’s bill, equating it to a version of the Fix-NICS bill that had previously been […]

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