Anti-gun groups are bombarding Senators with text messages, emails and phone calls, urging them to support H.5510a/S.405. As previously reported, this gun confiscation bill masquerading as "domestic violence" legislation has cleared hurdles on the House side and is nearing final passage in the Senate. The Senate Judiciary Committee could begin hearing this bill at any hour now that the Legislature is tentatively planning to adjourn this week.
H.5510a/S.405 is a flawed bill with many problems. Even judges and police chiefs have been troubled by the extensive problems with this bill. H.5510a/S.405 would remove judicial discretion and could result in lifetime gun bans for people who are simply accused of an act. The bill includes restraining orders where there has been no finding of guilt. The bill also fails to address multiple important questions with regard to storage of firearms, liability and costs associated with both. As we have repeatedly stated, domestic violence is an abhorrent crime, but this bill doesn't protect domestic violence victims. Current federal and state laws are in place to make sure convicted violent abusers cannot possess firearms, and this bill is as dangerous as it is unnecessary.
The rules have been suspended in the Senate, which means Senators can pass bills out of committee by simply huddling in a corner with little to no notice. Because of the accelerated pace of session in the waning hours, it's imperative that you contact members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senate President Dominick Ruggerio, Senate Majority Leader Michael McCaffrey and Senate Minority Leader Dennis Algiere immediately and respectfully request that they oppose this dangerous bill.
The stakes could not be higher for the Rhode Island firearms community. Anti-gun groups have co-opted domestic violence organizations simply to notch a victory that they can use as momentum for their larger gun ban agenda. It's absolutely vital that Rhode Island gun owners make their voice heard on this legislation.