New York Gov. Cuomo signs major gun-control package into law

posted at 10:11 pm on January 15, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

President Obama is slated to announce his decisions on gun-control proposals for the nation tomorrow, but New York Gov. Andrew “confiscation could be an option” Cuomo has already charged forward with new laws for his state:

New York on Tuesday became the first state to approve a comprehensive set of gun control laws in response to last month’s mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school, amid concerns among gun owners that the spate of changes to local and state gun laws could make them targets of overzealous politicians and prosecutors.

The New York Assembly gave final approval to the bill late Tuesday afternoon — Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed it within minutes.

New York’s new laws will expand the state’s ban on assault weapons and include new measures to keep guns away from mentally disturbed individuals. Under the new law, ammunition magazines would also be restricted to seven bullets, from the current 10 — owners caught with eight or more bullets in a magazine could face a misdemeanor charge. The law also prohibits Internet sales of assault weapons and in another provision, a therapist who thinks a mental health patient is making a credible threat to use a gun illegally would be required to report the incident to the state.

Well, the New York legislature passed the measures and sent them on to Cuomo, so they at least went through the full-court channels rather than executive action, hem hem, but the whole thing does seem rather inappropriately hasty:

Governor Andrew Cuomo is trying to lead the nation in gun control, but he’s picked a peculiar way of doing it. Mr. Cuomo negotiated in secret with a few other powerful politicians on a dog’s breakfast of legislation that got no public discussion at all and was passed by state senators who had not even read it—because they were not given a chance to do so.

The resulting bill is hard to judge on the merits. It’s a snarl of good ideas, strange ideas and ideas that seem quite bad. While some items should figure into federal gun control legislation, Washington should not take New York as an example of how to go about this difficult business.

As New York state Senator Greg Ball said on the floor last night, this doesn’t seem to have quite as much to do with well-thought out, legitimate efforts to make everyone safer as it does with a 2016 Democratic contender’s strategic feel-good attempt to take a big national lead on the progressive cause du jour — high-capacity magazine bans are not effective at preventing tragedy, and they make self-defense all the harder. Powerful, via RightScoop:


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