One of the most prominent gun-control organizations in the country has begun releasing its 2022 statehouse agenda, and some hot-button proposals are missing.
Everytown for Gun Safety, the Michael Bloomberg-backed national gun-control group, issued press releases in recent days identifying legislation it supports in the various states where the 2022 legislative session has begun. Major themes from the group’s agenda include opposition to permitless carry legislation, ‘Stand Your Ground’ laws, and support for ‘ghost gun’ regulation.
Opposition to permitless carry, in particular, was featured in releases for five states: Indiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, Florida, and Alabama. The group has already responded in opposition to the Governor of Georgia’s support for a similar bill in his state. Everytown also voiced support for a bill that would require a permit for handgun purchases in Delaware and expressed opposition to a ballot initiative in Iowa that would subject all gun control laws in the state to strict scrutiny when reviewed in court.
But, the group noticeably withheld support from specific gun-control proposals, even in blue states like California and Washington.
The group’s decision to shy away from some of the more high-profile measures proposed in California and Washington could signal a tactical shift in 2022. With the prospect of an upcoming election season, as well as waning support for new gun laws, gun-control advocates could be looking to eschew high-profile fights over more controversial gun measures.
The group stayed silent on controversial proposals out of the Golden State, such as Governor Gavin Newsom’s (D.) desire to mimic the model of Texas’ abortion law for assault weapons and ‘ghost guns.’
“This year, lawmakers should protect Californians by supporting gun safety bills that would reduce gun deaths and save lives, starting with AB 452, first of its kind legislation to require schools to send home information about secure firearm storage, and AB 988, legislation to create a crisis line for people having a mental health crisis,” Everytown said in a January 3 press release for the state.
The group also chose not to support a newly introduced bill from San Francisco Assemblymember Phil Ting (D.) to create new civil liability for gun manufacturers and dealers. It is modeled after a similar law out of New York. That law is currently facing a legal challenge from several gun makers and the National Shooting Sports Foundation.
Similarly, Everytown chose to highlight safe storage practices, certain gun-carry restrictions, and even a police reform measure over some of the more hotly-contested measures currently proposed in Washington state.
“This year, lawmakers should protect Washington residents by supporting gun safety bills that would reduce gun deaths and save lives, starting with first of its kind legislation to require schools to send home information about secure firearm storage,” the group said in its January 10 release for the state. “They should also take action to end qualified immunity, regulate ghost guns, prohibit guns in local meetings, and increase their investment in violence intervention groups.”
Notably left out is the planned reintroduction of an assault weapons ban and magazine capacity restriction, the latter of which is explicitly supported in the agenda of the state gun-control group Alliance For Gun Responsibility. A similar proposal failed in 2019, despite Democratic majorities in the state legislature.
However, the group expressed support for a measure to outlaw the manufacture, sale, and possession of magazines with a capacity greater than ten rounds in Rhode Island.
Everytown did not respond to a request for comment on the decision not to include support for the proposals in its Washington and California state agendas.