Emboldened by conservative lawmakers, a Virginia Senate panel has approved a bill that would kill the state’s one-gun-a-month limit on handgun purchases, the Richmond Times-Dispatch
Approval of the measure by the state Senate Courts of Justice Committee is expected to lead to the “most significant change to Virginia’s gun laws in years,” according to the newspaper.
The measure, the newspaper added, has “strong support” in the Republican-controlled House of Delegates and Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell has signaled that he will sign it.
At the same time, however, the GOP-dominated Senate panel deferred consideration for at least a year on another gun bill that would have eased restrictions on background checks for rifles and long guns, and one senator withdrew a bill that would have restricted public colleges from imposing their own gun regulations on campus.
Republicans hold an eight to seven majority in the courts committee, but one Democrat voted with his GOP colleagues for passage of the bill lifting the one-a-month restriction. The approval marked the first time since 1993, when the statute was passed to address interstate firearms trafficking, that efforts to repeal it had succeeded.
Repeal opponents were quick to sound an alarm.
“The only group that this law currently prohibits is gun traffickers,” gun-control advocate Andrew Goddard, the father of 2007 Virginia Tech shooting survivor Colin Goddard, told the Times-Dispatch. “Getting rid of the only law we have on the books . . . is not going to make that problem go away.”
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