Washington will become the tenth state to ban the sale of assault weapons in the United States.
OLYMPIA, Wash. – A ban on the sale, manufacture, and import of assault weapons in the state of Washington has been passed by the Legislature and is now moving to Governor Jay Inslee’s desk.
The House of Representatives concurred with the fundamental amendment to House Bill 1240 that was added in the Senate, voting 56-42 to pass. The amendment would allow gun manufacturers to sell inventory before January 1, 2023, and only to out-of-state customers for 90 days after the bill goes into effect.
The bill does not prohibit possession of assault weapons and allows law enforcement and military service members to possess them, except in inheritance cases.
Inslee and Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson both took to social media to celebrate the bill’s passage, with Inslee tweets“WA does not and will not accept gun violence as normal. The ban on the sale of assault weapons, our bill enacting training requirements and waiting times, and our bill to increase accountability. processes by manufacturers and retailers will save lives.”
Gun advocates have vowed to challenge the bill in court, arguing that the ban violates the Second Amendment.
In states that have passed laws similar to HB 1240, lawsuits have followed.
In Oregon, Proposition 114, which was approved by voters, is currently pending in court. That law prohibits the sale of high-volume magazines and requires a gun license.
Rushing to buy assault weapons before the law comes into effect
HB 1240 applies to all future sales of assault weapons, so customers are rushing to buy before the law goes into effect.
“Everybody is trying to get in at the last minute. Chris Ohnemus, co-owner of Pintos Guns in Renton, said we’re getting orders from out of state, shippers coming in, and people trying to get their paperwork done before shipping. This is in effect.
Opponents of the law say it is widespread and that more focus is needed on mental health.
Law advocates like the Coalition for Gun Responsibility have been fighting for this in Olympia for years and say it will save lives.
“It was a huge victory. I was at Olympia the first day it was voted off the Senate floor. It was just such an incredible and emotional moment in history, I will truly never forget how that night felt,” said Victoria Muzyk, Director of Communications, Gun Alliance for Responsibility.
Proponents of the bill cite a federal study that found that if a federal assault weapons ban were in effect, it would prevent mass shootings.
“Until we see DC take country-based action, I think individual states will really be on the right track towards our future so we can prevent tragedies,” Muzyk said. like this”.