Tomorrow, July 9th, Governor Northam will convene a special session to address gun violence down in the state capital. This comes in wake of the tragic Virginia Beach mass shooting that left 12 people dead in a municipal building on May 31st, 2019.
During a June 4th press conference announcing the special session aimed at advancing gun control, Governor Northam called for “votes and laws, not thoughts and prayers.”
“I ask that the members of the General Assembly engage in an open and transparent debate and that the bills brought before the legislature are put to a vote by the entire General Assembly,” Northam said. “The nation will be watching.”
Funny, the nation was watching back in February as he embarrassed himself by first admitting then denying about being in a medical yearbook photo in either blackface or a KKK hood back in 1984. The discovery came after a classmate of his, who found his infanticide comments abhorrent, made the whereabouts of the picture known.
In an op-ed in the Virginian Pilot, Northam added:
I believe in the power of prayer, though it is past time that we do more. I want votes and laws, not thoughts and prayers.
He explained further in that same op-ed that his “solutions” for combatting gun violence will look like this (bolded for emphasis):
I will ask them to ban magazines that hold more than 10 rounds. I’ll ask them to make background checks universal — a policy that 90 percent of the public supports. I will ask for an Extreme Risk Protective Order law — a way for law enforcement to ask a court to keep guns away from someone who poses a substantial danger to themselves or others, a concept supported by President Donald Trump’s School Safety Task Force. I will join President Trump in supporting bans on silencers and bump stocks.
I will ask legislators to reinstate Virginia’s successful “One Handgun a Month” policy, first enacted under former Gov. Doug Wilder. Being one of the top states for gun trafficking is not something to be proud of.
I will ask for tougher penalties for anyone who leaves a loaded gun around a child, and to require anyone whose gun has been stolen to report the theft within 24 hours.
And I will ask to give localities more authority to regulate firearms, including in their own government buildings.
His so-called “common sense” proposals would include imposing universal background checks; child access prevention; reinstating one gun a month limits; banning so-called assault weapons (including semi-automatic AR-15’s, bump stocks, and suppressors; a mandatory requirement to report lost or stolen guns within 24 hours or face penalties; allowing localities to ban guns from municipal buildings (guns were already forbidden in the building in Virginia Beach), and extreme risk protection orders (ERPO) better known as “red flag laws” that boast serious Fourth Amendment concerns.
Many of these proposals are similar to the gun control agenda he pushed back in January during regular session. Those proposals were killed in committee by the Republican-led General Assembly.
At a June 21st Virginia Boys State event in Radford, Northam was pressed about his extreme gun positions by questioners during the Q&A section. He admitted that his push for gun control, while ambitious, wouldn’t have prevented the mass shooting. Here’s more:
Northam conceded that his proposals wouldn’t have necessarily prevented the Virginia Beach shooting. But he said the legislation his administration has backed would have helped.
“The bigger picture is it wasn’t just about Virginia Beach,” Northam added. “We have had one tragedy after another. I hear people say now is not the right time. I say when is the right time? And maybe it’s too late. Maybe we should have talked about this before.”
As I noted here at The Resurgent recently, Virginia gun owners and voters concerned about the direction this state is taking need to stay alert and vigilant.
If you find yourself near or around Richmond, attend Virginia Citizens Defense League’s (VCDL) rally tomorrow and make your voice heard. Contact your lawmakers and urge them to vote down Northam’s invasive and equally ineffective proposals.