As the Virginia House of Delegates continues to work through legislation previously passed in the state Senate, gun owners can take note of a few more legislative victories.
Today, after their passage in the House, three more pro-gun bills will now be sent to Governor Bob McDonnell for his approval:
Senate Bill 67, sponsored by state Senator Bill Stanley (R-20), would remove the option for a locality to require an applicant for a concealed handgun permit to submit fingerprints with the application. This legislation was passed in the House of Delegates by a 72 to 24 vote.
Senate Bill 323, drafted by the NRA and sponsored by state Senator Bill Carrico (R-40), would repeal the prohibition on law-abiding citizens buying more than one handgun within a thirty-day period. Anti-gun opponents have long claimed that gun rationing keeps handguns out of the hands of criminals, but history has shown this law to be ineffective, and to only affect and penalize law-abiding citizens. This legislation was passed by a 64 to 32 vote. SB 323, is the companion Bill to House Bill 940, which was previously passed by both chambers and has been sent to the Governor for his approval.
Senate Bill 563, sponsored by state Senator Frank Ruff (R-15), would alter certain application procedures to obtain a concealed handgun permit, including allowing for the submission of an initial application via U.S. mail. This bill would also restrict the clerk and the circuit court from requesting or requiring any information from an applicant other than that which is allowed on the concealed handgun permit application. This legislation was passed in the House of Delegates by a 79 to 20 vote.
Finally, another pro-gun bill, Senate Bill 4, was re-referred to the House Courts of Justice Committee where it will most likely remain since no more committee hearings have been scheduled. Sponsored by state Senator Richard Stuart (R-28), SB 4 would codify a version of the "castle doctrine" allowing the use of physical force, including deadly force, by a person in his dwelling against an intruder in the dwelling who has committed an overt act against him or another person in the dwelling, without civil liability.
Thank you to those who contacted their state legislators in support of these bills. In the meantime, please continue to check your e-mail and www.NRAILA.org for the latest updates on Second Amendment legislation in Richmond.