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Delaware: Magazine Ban & Handgun Licensing Bills Being Filed

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Delaware: Magazine Ban & Handgun Licensing Bills Being Filed

Draft bills are currently being circulated to restrict magazine capacities and require a license to obtain handguns. In addition, last week, House Bill 124 was introduced, to strip Second Amendment rights without due process.

House Bill 124 goes beyond federal law to strip individuals of their Second Amendment rights without due process. Among other things, it prohibits subjects of an outstanding arrest warrant, active indictment, or information for felonies or misdemeanor domestic violence, even for nonviolent offenses, from purchasing firearms. There is no process to notify someone that they have an arrest warrant against them until police act on the warrant. Individuals who had warrants that were improperly issued, charges that were dropped before proceeding further, or felony charges pled down to misdemeanors, will still face prosecution if they attempted to buy a firearm, even if they were unaware of these proceedings against them. Federal law already makes it a felony for individuals under indictment for serious crimes to receive firearms, and for persons to give firearms to persons who are under indictment for those serious crimes.

The two bills below do not yet have numbers. They are currently being circulated in the General Assembly collecting sponsors.

The “Delaware Large Capacity Magazine Prohibition Act” bans possessing magazines with a capacity greater than seventeen rounds of ammunition. Such arbitrary limits are not grounded in public safety and instead restrict law-abiding citizens who use them for various purposes, such as self-defense and competition.

Another draft bill requires prospective purchasers or recipients of a handgun to first have a “handgun qualified purchaser card” that requires a training course. While those with a carry permit will be exempt from the training requirement, they will not be exempt from the license. In addition, it requires information regarding prospective handgun purchasers be made available to state law-enforcement, and does not prohibit law-enforcement from retaining records of purchasers and of the firearms purchased. This provision essentially creates a state registry of handguns.

As the nation’s leading provider of firearms training, NRA knows the important role that high-quality firearms education plays in the safe and responsible use of firearms. At the same time, NRA understands that gun owners are a diverse community with a variety of educational needs. That is why NRA opposes mandatory and one-size-fits-all firearms training policies that can act as a barrier to the competent exercise of Second Amendment rights.

NRA will keep you updated as these bills move through the legislative process. Please stay tuned to www.nraila.org and your email inbox.

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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.