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New Jersey: Senate Committee Set to Vote on Flawed “Handgun Purchaser ID Card” Legislation

Monday, December 6, 2010

This afternoon at 2:00 p.m. today, Monday December 6th, the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee is scheduled to hear S2190, sponsored by State Senator Fred Madden (D-4), which directs the State Police to establish a “handgun purchaser identification card” which would permit the sale, transfer and delivery of handguns between cardholders and retail dealers only.

This legislation is apparently Senator Madden’s effort to pander to gun owners after his late-night tie-breaking vote flip that resulted in passage of Jon Corzine’s handgun rationing law in 2009.  Unfortunately, the legislation does not go far enough and rubs salt in the wound by failing to exempt those who obtain the card from the one gun a month law.  Senator Madden has squandered an opportunity to rectify his past actions and is seeking only a partial solution to New Jersey’s antiquated and unconstitutional gun laws.

S2190 does not eliminate the current paper form of “permit to purchase” but creates a bifurcated system run by the State Police in which paper permits must still be issued for some transactions, including private transfers, which cannot be made with the new card.  The legislation has other troubling aspects, including use of an undefined, subjective standard to qualify for the new card (applicants must somehow prove themselves to be persons “of good character and good repute in the community in which they live,” a vague standard found elsewhere in NJ gun law that is in need of reform).

Senator Madden is insistent on pushing this bill with little opportunity for consultation and discussion with the National Rifle Association and the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs.

Please contact the members of the Committee and encourage them to either amend S2190 or hold it until the issues and concerns of gun owners can be properly addressed.

Senate Law & Public Safety Committee

State Senator John Girgenti (D-35)         (973) 427-1229

State Senator Nicholas Sacco (D-32)      (201) 295-0200

State Senator Andrew Ciesla (R-10)         (732) 840-9028

State Senator Donald Norcross (D-5)       (856) 547-4800

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