I’ve written a number of times this Legislative Session about vital gun legislation and the need for the North Dakota Legislature to get their crap together on the issue of protecting our gun rights. I’m ecstatic to report that on the most important gun bill of the 2021 session, they have. The Senate passed House Bill 1383 by a wide margin of 41-5 today.
I originally wrote about this bill back in January. In its original form, HB 1383 would have prohibited any state agency, political subdivision, or law enforcement officer from participating in “the investigation, prosecution, or enforcement of a violation of a federal statute, order, rule, or regulation purporting to regulate a firearm, firearm accessory, or firearm ammunition”. In a nutshell, North Dakota would have been forbidden from participating in the enforcement of anything related to the feds and guns.
While the bill passed the House on a 59-34 vote, at the time, that wasn’t enough to kick in the emergency clause if it becomes law. Too many TransRepublicans voted against it. Regardless, it was still enough to send it over to the Senate.
In the name of compromise and giving HB 1383 a fighting chance on the Senate side, there were some amendments made to the bill after it crossed over from the House. Namely, the following:
- They removed the section that included “firearm accessory”.
- Added the emergency clause back in.
- Limited its scope to include any “federal statute, order, rule, or regulation purporting to regulate a firearm” that was or is enacted after January 1, 2021.
- Added a provision that allows state and local law enforcement to assist a federal agency or official for offenses “that firearms are incidental to, including a drug offense, homicide, assault, kidnapping, sex offense, or human trafficking.”
- Added a provision that allows state and local law enforcement to assist a federal agency or official “if the investigation also pertains to a felony violation of state law.”
Some folks aren’t happy about all the Senate amendments, but they were a necessity if the bill was to have any chance of passing. Why? Because the changes got law enforcement on board with the legislation. Even in its current form, this is a huge win for law-abiding North Dakotan’s who love their gun rights.
Just today, President Joe Biden announced a slate of gun control actions via executive order. Those surely won’t be the end of what his administration does. In fact, it’s just the beginning. If you don’t believe me, then check out Biden’s gun control agenda. And don’t forget about HR 127 — the “Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act” — which has been introduced to the 117th United States Congress. It’s the kind of bill anti-gunners dream about.
Today’s vote was very timely. As a state, we must have a mechanism in place to push back against federal overreach on guns from the Biden administration and Democrats in Congress. And this is it.
The bill will now go back to the House. If they concur with the changes, it will then go to Governor Doug Burgum’s desk where we’ll need your emails telling him to sign it into law.
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