by Max Brantley
The vote was 29-5 today on a Senate bill of little except negative relevance. It is, of course, to prove that the gun lobby can pass just about anything it wants in the state Senate no matter how damaging.
Arkansas long ago ratified the NRA's desire for legislation to pre-empt home rule and prevent any city or county from enacting a firearms law more restrictive than state law. But, just for window dressing, Sen. Bill Sample introduced a bill to pre-empt local rules even in the event a governor were to declare a state of emergency and to promptly return any guns seized during enforcement of emergency order. The bill also — and I suspect this is where the NRA really comes in — prohibits local governments from suing gun and ammo makers on behalf of the public for damages their products might cause.
The nays: Elliott, Flowers, Johnson, Madison and Salmon. Good company.
The House Judiciary Committee displayed some cool reasoning on a gun nut proposal last week, the open carry bill that was killed on a bipartisan vote. Maybe it will do as well with this one. Loy Mauch is the House sponsor, to give you some idea of how extreme this one is.