Delaware’s Senate has voted against a bill that would have prohibited the sale, transfer, and possession of semi-automatic weapons — signaling a rejection of one of the most extreme gun control measures circulating throughout the United States.
The bill, known to the Delaware legislature as Senate Bill 163, would have criminalized the ” the manufacture, sale, offer to sell, transfer, purchase, receipt, possession, or transport of assault weapons in Delaware,” with an exception for those who have purchased said firearms before the law’s passage. The National Rifle Association called it one of the most extreme gun control measures in the country. This is the second time the bill has been rejected in the state.
Senate Bill 163 made it to Delaware’s Senate floor as part of a wave of anti-gun legislation that followed the February 14th mass shooting at a high school in Parkland Florida. The event received intense media coverage, coinciding with high-profile calls for a ban on so-called “assault weapons” — a term that has come to broadly refer to semi-automatic firearms. Such a ban would effectively prohibit the majority of weapons in the United States, including most handguns and rifles.
News of the bill’s defeat in the Delaware Senate was met warmly by the NRA, which has been thoroughly excoriated by negative press in the aftermath of the Parkland shooting.
“Thank you to NRA Members and Second Amendment supporters who continued to contact their lawmakers in opposition to this legislation,” the organization said in a statement. “Also, special thanks to those legislators who supported the Second Amendment rights of Delaware citizens by voting against Senate Bill 163.”
Delaware lawmakers who opposed the bill did the right thing by rejecting it during this session. By lumping in all semi-automatic weapons into the vague “assault” category, the bill would have effectively rendered the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution moot. Hopefully, other state legislators will have the same resolve in saying no to constitutionally offensive bills like this.
~ Firearm Daily