When the Seattle-based, and billionaire-backed Alliance for Gun Responsibility—a gun prohibition lobbying group supporting Evergreen State gun control legislation—reported that “hundreds of Washingtonians” had signed up to support two extremist bills in the State Senate, they were only telling half a story.
The other part, which they overlooked, is that those favoring Senate Bills 5078 (banning high capacity magazines) and 5038 (banning open carry of firearms at rallies and demonstrations) were vastly outnumbered by Second Amendment activists opposing both measures.
According to data assembled by Aaron Lyons of the Black Rifle League, using a program known as Microsoft PowerBI (Business Intelligence), SB 5078 drew 3,060 opponents against 558 supporters who signed up to either testify to the Senate Law & Justice Committee during a Monday hearing, or provide written testimony.
While, 1,005 people signed on to support SB 5038, grassroots opponents still had the edge with 1,415 people signing up against the measure.
Perhaps even more important, according to a post at the Washington 2021 Legislative Action Group’s Facebook page, spokesman Curtis Bingham reported Wednesday the past three days had seen more than 350 new members joining the group.
“This group has been recognized by lobbyists and politicians alike as being extremely accurate and highly effective in reaching legislators in Olympia,” he stated.
What’s happening in the Evergreen State may be a signal gun owners are waking up to the threat one-party rule poses to their rights under the state and federal constitutions.
Not that turnout or recorded opposition will make that big a difference with the Democrat-dominated Senate, but Lyons has come up with some interesting data.
Only 64 activists signed up to actually testify against SB 5038, while 276 anti-gunners signed up to testify. There were 199 people signed up to testify against SB 5078 and 221 to support it. Of those who participated in the online hearing, 84.48 percent opposed SB 5078 while only 15.41 percent support it. SB 5038 saw 41.48 percent in support and 58.4 percent against, suggesting more support for a ban on openly carried firearms at public events.
Many of those testifying against open carry expressed fears about people with guns and contended the only reason for demonstrators to show up with rifles or handguns exposed was to intimidate people. Opponents of the measure argued the bill not only is anti-Second Amendment, it also poses a threat to the First Amendment.
By no small coincidence, Virginia lawmakers are currently also considering a bill that would ban firearms and stun guns on the Capitol grounds in Richmond, and on surrounding streets. According to the Virginia Mercury, House Bill 2295, the measure “would codify statehouse rules and temporary gun bans that have been enacted in response to armed protesters.”
The newspaper reported that Delegate Mark Levine (D-Alexandria)—who sponsored the bill—“said it would prevent future occurrences of armed extremist groups demonstrating near the Capitol.”
Last year, more than 22,000 citizens marched and rallied in Richmond to protest the gun control agenda of the new Democrat majority.
Virginia voters will have the opportunity to rectify their situation in November, when the House is up for reelection. Virginia legislative elections are held in off-years.