By: José Niño

On April 8, 2023, the Washington State Senate passed House Bill 1240, a bill that would prohibit the future sale, production, and importation of so-called “assault weapons” by a 27-21 vote.

“Contrary to Democrats in Olympia, who sound like they’re reading from the same script, modern semiautomatic firearms are not ‘weapons of war’,” declared Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “This ban will not improve public safety, as proponents such as Attorney General Bob Ferguson have asserted. It will only impair the rights of law-abiding citizens while doing absolutely nothing to prevent criminals from committing murder and mayhem, and they know it.”

This bill is going back to the House for concurrence. On March 8, the House originally passed the bill by a 55-42 vote. According to CCRKBA, HB 1240 “does not ban possession of semiautomatic rifles, shotguns or handguns by people who already own them.”

“One or more lawsuits challenging this legislation will almost certainly be filed within days, if not hours, of Gov. Jay Inslee’s signing,” Gottlieb revealed. “Ultimately, we expect this law to be nullified by the courts as a violation of the Second Amendment and Washington State’s constitution. In the meantime, of course, Evergreen State gun owners will continue to be treated like second-class citizens by the self-righteous zealots behind the ban, while the criminal element will remain undeterred and unencumbered.”

“Proponents of this legislation have touted the results of a poll done last year by the Northwest Progressive Institute showing that 56 percent of Washington voters support a ban,” Gottlieb added. “What they overlook is that constitutional rights are not subject to popularity polls, a fact we expect the courts to remind them about in the days ahead.”

“The truly sad part about this is that people who have been gulled into believing a gun ban will have any major impact on violent crime are going to find out the hard way they were misled by the gun prohibition lobby,” the CCRKBA chairman noted. “All this accomplishes is that it gives anti-gunners an excuse to celebrate at the expense of law-abiding Washington citizens who have committed no crime and whose only sin is that they choose to exercise a constitutionally protected right. Where’s the justice, or even the logic, in that?”

Washington is one of America’s most thoroughly anti-gun states. Per Guns & Ammo Magazine’s best states for gun owners’ rankings, Washington finds itself in a horrid 41st place. With Democrats holding solid control of the State House (58-40), State Senate (29-20), and the Governor’s mansion, gun control will be passed with relative ease in the Evergreen State.

At this juncture, it’s going to take court action and nullification measures at the county and municipal levels for any semblance of gun rights to exist in Washington. Unfortunately, that’s how the cookie is crumbling in many blue states nationwide.

José Niño is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. Contact him via Facebook, Twitter, or email him at [email protected]. Get his e-book, The 10 Myths of Gun Control, here.