House passes parole ban for gun crime felons

House passes parole ban for gun crime felons

Gov. Asa Hutchinson vetoed a bill Friday that would prohibit local and state police from working with federal authorities in the enforcement of certain federal gun laws that conflict with the Arkansas Constitution. The legislation, Senate Bill 298, dubbed the “Arkansas Sovereignty Act of 2021” would declare federal gun laws and regulations “null and void” in Arkansas if they “infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Arkansas Constitution, Article 2, §5.” The bill specifically declares “null and void” the National Firearms Act, which regulates machine guns and sawed-off shotguns, and the Gun Control Act of 1968, which Hutchinson said prevents “certain felons from possession of firearms.” In a letter dated Friday to lawmakers explaining his decision, Hutchinson wrote that the bill “jeopardizes the essential partnership between state and federal law enforcement agencies,” in how they police gun crimes in Arkansas. “The partnership between state and federal law enforcement officers is essential for the safety of Arkansas citizens,” Hutchinson wrote. “This bill will break that partnership and put the safety of Arkansans at risk.” In an interview with the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Hutchinson spoke of his experience as a federal prosecutor and how federal gun laws were useful for prosecuting violent offenders. If SB298 were to become law, it would be a giveaway to defendants facing gun charges, Hutchinson said. “It’s a defense attorney’s dream law,” Hutchinson said. “They’re going to have plenty of opportunities to […]

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