A gunman in Las Vegas opened fire on the crowd at a music festival last Oct 1. murdering 58 people and injuring 851 more. During the horrific crime, the shooter fired more than 1,100 rounds from his hotel room using a “bump fire” stock to turn a rifle into an automatic weapon.
Today, a GOP legislator in the Arizona state house is blocking a bill that would outlaw bump stock devices and trigger cranks, defying popular support for this common-sense gun safety measure.
Republican state Rep. Eddie Farnsworth, who is the Chair of the state Judiciary and Public Safety Committee said that the bill will NOT get a hearing, because he thinks it’s a waste of time and personally doesn’t support it.
However, the general public is interested in having this bill heard, according to the organization Gun Violence Prevention Arizona.
The bill, HB 2023, was introduced in January by state Democratic Rep. Randy Friese and Rep. Daniel Hernandez, both of Tucson. Friese, who is a trauma surgeon, saved the life of then-Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head at a supermarket parking lot in 2011. Hernandez, who was an intern in her office at the time, held his hand over Giffords’ wound to slow the bleeding.
Voters in Arizona can contact Farnsworth to demand a hearing on the bill, by:
- Calling him at (602) 926-5735.
- Emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Write him at 1700 West Washington Street, Phoenix, AZ 85007.
- Send a fax to 602-417-3122.
Farnsworth is some kind of weird firearms worshipper who has voted in favor of dangerous laws to authorize gun sales without a background check, authorizing the carrying of concealed guns at schools and public places, prohibiting the creation a registry of gun owners, and naming an official state gun.
In contrast, Dr. Friese sees gun violence as a public health issue, and the constant drum of shootings as an epidemic.
This year, Friese and Hernandez have introduced four more pieces of firearm-related legislation, in addition to the bump stock ban:
- HB 2024 would require universal criminal background checks for people buying firearms. It would close the so-called “gun show” or “private sale” loophole by requiring a private person selling or transferring a firearm to go through a licensed firearm dealer, with some exceptions. Licensed dealers are required to run background checks.
- House Concurrent Resolution 2001 is nearly identical to HB 2024, but it asks legislators to put the issue of universal background questions on the ballot.
- HB 2140 would create a process where immediate family members or a police officer can petition a judge for an injunction to prohibit someone with mental-health issues from possessing a gun.
- HB 2299 would require a person on probation for a domestic-violence offense to hand all their firearms over to a law enforcement agency for the duration of their probation.
The bills Friese and Hernandez have proposed must receive a public hearing and an affirmative vote in that committee for them to advance.