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Connecticut: Unconstitutional Bill That Denies Due Process Before Committee Today

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Connecticut: Unconstitutional Bill That Denies Due Process Before Committee Today

Today, the Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on an unconstitutional bill that denies due process to gun owners, sponsored by “F-rated” Senator Martin Looney (D-11).  Since previously reported, Senate Bill 650’s language has become available, and it is even worse than expected.

SB 650 would allow your gun rights to be stripped without due process of law.  This legislation would require a sworn police officer to serve all ex parte temporary restraining orders when the applicant indicates on the application that the respondent has access to a firearm or ammunition, or holds a valid state-issued firearm or ammunition permit or eligibility certificate.  An ex parte temporary restraining order is one where only one side, the applicant, makes a claim and doesn’t have to appear in front of a judge before the order is issued.  Upon the delivery of the order, the police officer would then immediately confiscate all legally owned firearms, ammunition, carry permits and eligibility certificates BEFORE a person has had a hearing before a court to determine the merits of the complaint made against them.

If firearms are confiscated erroneously or a court ultimately dismisses an order, and since a person does not have an immediate ability to have a hearing or right to be heard before a court before their firearms, ammunition, permits, certificates are taken, the wait is often as long as two years or longer to get your firearms, ammunition, certificates and permits returned to you.  There is also, unfortunately, no reprisal for filing a false claim.  This bill takes unnecessary steps to blatantly circumvent your rights.

It is clear that the Governor and some misguided legislators have only one interest –gun confiscation and limiting the rights of the law-abiding in Connecticut, as they have shown no interest in providing respondents with an opportunity to be heard before a judge ahead of losing their Second Amendment rights.  In fact, this legislation even removes verbatim “an opportunity to be heard” from the current state statute that protects individuals in these circumstances today.

It's important for gun owners to have the opportunity to put up their own defense before losing their Second Amendment rights.  This bill's low evidentiary standards and lack of a mechanism for individuals to present their own defense before being deprived of their constitutional rights is unacceptable.

There is a small group of legislators that recently held a press conference to expose the severe problems in this bill.  They need your help convincing the remaining committee members that this bill is unconstitutional.  It is CRITICAL that you IMMEDIATELY use the links provided below to contact members of the Judiciary Committee and urge them to oppose Senate Bill 650. Please also consider submitting testimony by clicking here.

 

Judiciary Committee:

Senator Eric Coleman (D-2), Co-Chair

Representative William Tong (D-147), Co-Chair

Senator Paul Doyle (D-9), Vice Chair

Representative Daniel Fox (D-148), Vice Chair

Senator John Kissel (R-7), Ranking Member

Representative Rosa Rebimbas (R-70), Ranking Member

Representative Al Adinolfi (R-103)

Representative William Aman (R-14)

Representative Angel Arce (D-4)

Representative David Baram (D-15)

Representative Jeffrey Berger (D-73)

Senator Toni Boucher (R-26)

Representative Cecilia Buck-Taylor (R-67)

Senator Beth Bye (D-5)

Representative Vincent Candelora (R-86)

Representative Christie Carpino (R-32)

Representative Jeff Currey (D-11)

Representative Patricia Dillon (D-92)

Representative Doug Dubitsky (R-47)

Senator Mae Flexer (D-29)

Representative Mary Fritz (D-90)

Senator Terry Gerratana (D-6)

Representative Bob Godfrey (D-110)

Representative Minnie Gonzalez (D-3)

Representative Stephen Harding (R-107)

Representative Ernest Hewett (D-39)

Representative David Labriola (R-131)

Representative Roland Lemar (D-96)

Senator Art Linares (R-33)

Representative Ben McGorty (R-122)

Senator Michael McLachlan (R-24)

Representative Bruce Morris (D-140)

Representative Tom O’Dea (R-125)

Representative Arthur O’Neill (R-69)

Representative Robyn Porter (D-94)

Representative Emmett Riley (D-46)

Representative Robert Sampson (R-80)

Representative Joseph Serra (D-33)

Representative John Shaban (R-135)

Representative Caroline Simmons (D-144)

Representative Richard Smith (R-108)

Representative Steven Stafstrom (D-129)

Representative Joe Verrengia (D-20)

Representative Toni Walker (D-93)

Senator Gary Winfield (D-10)     

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.