Senate Bill 719A is currently scheduled for a vote in the Oregon Senate on May 1st.
You will recall that this bill started life as a bill requiring the State Court Administrator to study methods to improve efficiency.
Under the skillful hands of Senator Floyd Prozanski it became a bill to deprive people of their firearms and their rights with no notice and no due process. (Please note: as of 4.26.17 the legislative website still links to the old bill. This should be corrected by 4.27.17)
In its current form, this bill will allow the police to confiscate your firearms because a police officer or household member accused you of being dangerous.
You can lose your guns if you have purchased a “deadly instrument” in the last 180 days.
You can lose your guns if you get a DUI. (But oddly you get to keep your car.)
The gun confiscation language was stuffed into SB 719 from another bill (SB 868) that died when Prozanski made a procedural error and 868 could not move forward. The gun grabbing, rights smashing, family destroying language was originally created by Senator Ginny Burdick and formerly pro-gun Republican Brian Boquist.
While Boquist has claimed his bill is about preventing veteran’s suicides, there is not a single word in the original bill or this version that would offer the smallest aid to suicidal veterans.
In an email Boquist sent to OFF and the local NRA rep, (which he copied to the entire Republican Senate Caucus) Boquist said that OFF and the NRA “don’t care about veterans blowing their brains out.” The truth is, we care about WHY veterans are taking their own lives, not just HOW.
This bill is one of the most dangerous pieces of legislation the anti-gunners have ever dreamed up. It allows a family member to have a person’s property and rights taken by force by the police and then assumes that even though that person is very dangerous, the people who made these accusations can live safely with the person who had his right taken. It’s complete madness.
With the Senate being in control of the Democrats, and Republican Brian Boquist having joined them in their anti-rights extremism, we will have an uphill fight to kill this frightening bill. But we have to step up and do what we can.
Please contact your Senator and let them know you think this bill is far more likely to get people killed than protect them.
You can find you senator by using this link. Your Oregon Senator will be the first person listed.
Some suggested text and talking points follow.
While SB 719A pretends to be about protecting people who are suicidal and the household members of people who are violent and dangerous, it does nothing of the sort. In fact, SB 719A offers no help to people who are suicidal, and no help to people who are living with dangerous and violent family members.
SB 719A allows a person’s rights and property to be taken with no notice and no due process. Under this legislation a person can have the police confiscate their property simply because they have purchased a firearm or a vaguely defined “deadly instrument .” They can face this humiliation because they were guilty of a DUI.
While DUI’s are bad things, they don’t indicate that a person is violent or suicidal. I find it absurd that a person who is guilty of a DUI can lose his guns, but keep his car.
Under this bill the local police will be required to store confiscated firearms, possibly indefinitely. There is nothing in this bill that addresses what the police are supposed to do with NFA items, like suppressors, which they are not allowed to have without ATF approval. There is nothing that addresses what the police are supposed to do if the owner of a gun store is the victim of one of these confiscation orders.
SB 719A is poorly thought out and poorly drafted. It is an emotional response to a problem it does not even try to address.
I urge you to vote against this dangerous attack on property and liberty.