If Andrew Cuomo has truly had an epiphany about his approach to gun regulation, it’s not really evident from this admission. The New York Times reports that Cuomo will now try to rush some changes into his banner gun-control legislation that forced New York gun owners to use magazines that no one manufactures, with even the one exception to the rule found to be unworkable (via Legal Insurrection):
In the wake of the elementary school massacre in Newtown, Conn., Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York pushed through the State Legislature gun control measures that included not only a tougher assault weapons ban but also a tighter restriction on the maximum legal capacity of gun magazines.
But after weeks of criticism from gun owners, Mr. Cuomo said on Wednesday that he would seek to ease the restriction, which he said had proved unworkable even before it was scheduled to take effect on April 15.
The gun-control law, approved in January, banned the sale of magazines that hold more than seven rounds of ammunition. But, Mr. Cuomo said Wednesday, seven-round magazines are not widely manufactured. And, although the new gun law provided an exemption for the use of 10-round magazines at firing ranges and competitions, it did not provide a legal way for gun owners to purchase such magazines.
Now, one might think that after having been embarrassed by his own ignorance — and in the face of a number of critics who pointed these issues out from the beginning — Cuomo would advise the legislature to repeal the bill and start over again. One would be … wrong. This New York governor has decided to correct one idiocy with another, emphasis mine:
As a result, he said, he and legislative leaders were negotiating language that would continue to allow the sale of magazines holding up to 10 rounds, but still forbid New Yorkers from loading more than 7 rounds into those magazines.
Er, what? Will the police be around to check how many bullets are loaded into each magazine? And, by the way, will criminals be deterred from loading rounds 8, 9, and 10 into the magazine? The whole idea of magazine limits is to limit those with criminal intent from firing too many bullets without having to reload, at which point the law expects the disarmed to rush the criminal rather than shoot back and hope he’s worse at reloading than they will be at beating someone into submission. How will Cuomo’s latest idea deter criminals, who will have zero fear of having a gun inspection before committing their crimes?
“Hey, let’s go rob that bank. Get your guns ready, and — oh yeah, don’t load more than seven bullets into each magazine.”
Furthermore, if that kind of restriction was at all useful, then why pass a law forbidding 15-round or 30-round magazines at all? Just pass a law that says no one can load more than seven bullets into the magazine, and voila! Problem solved, right?
William Jacobson calls this new idea “irrational and arbitrary.” It’s also dumber than a box of rocks, and anyone with a hint of self-awareness would have realized it before the press release went out.