Over the duration of the 2017 regular session, we fought to create laws that would result in keeping guns out of dangerous hands. In the end, major legislation that would have changed the way that people purchase firearms by requiring background checks for all gun sales, had its language changed and eventually met its fate in the House Judiciary Committee. However, not all gun violence prevention legislation reached the same result.
Legislation to help keep guns out of dangerous hands hit a snag in the House Judiciary Committee today where it was tabled on a 7-6 vote. The motion to table ends debate and keeps the bill in committee, essentially ensuring that the bill will not make it to the House floor for a vote. House Bill 50, the original legislation, passed out of the House Judiciary Committee on February 10th and on to the house floor but was sent back by the bill’s sponsor, Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-Los Alamos), to have amendments made. The amendments targeted complications with the bill’s language on ‘gun transfers’ between family members and close friends. The substitute legislation, HB548, scraps the ‘gun transfers’ language and focuses the intention on requiring background checks for gun sales between strangers.
A few weeks ago, ProgressNow got word that the NRA was flooding New Mexico legislators’ inboxes with out of state emails – so we decided to fire back. And today, with help from the New Mexico chapter of Moms Demand Action, we handed in thousands of petitions signed by New Mexicans who support background checks for gun sales legislation. As the legislature winds to an end this upcoming Friday, work-days and work-weeks are getting longer, with hearings lasting into the night and on weekends. The House Judiciary Committee, the current place for gun violence prevention legislation, was set to meet today until a last minute change pushed the meeting to this upcoming Monday, 3/13, at 1:30. So…You guessed it!
Santa Fe – Former U.S. Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, the Tucson-area Congresswoman injured in a 2011 shooting at her “Congress on Your Corner Event,” stopped by the New Mexico State Capitol today to speak with lawmakers about bills strengthening gun violence prevention policies.
Gabby Giffords Steps in to New Mexico Firearms Debate
Former Rep. Giffords visits the Capitol amid Gun Debate
Video: Gabby Giffords discussing Gun Violence with NM Lawmakers
Giffords’ efforts focused on current legislation to require background checks for gun sales, as well as a Senate bill which would require that people surrender their firearms if they’re the subject of a protective order issued by a court as part of a case of domestic abuse. https://twitter.com/NMreport/status/834568473665638400
Read more on today’s visit from the New Mexico Political Report
Gifford and her husband founded Americans for Responsible Solutions, a the gun safety advocacy group after she survived a 2011 assassination attempt that killed six and injured a dozen others. ARS along with Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, New Mexicans to Prevent Gun Violence and Progress Now NM have launched grassroots efforts to get these pieces of legislation signed into law. Show your support for common sense legislation that will keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill by requiring background checks for gun purchases.
As important gun violence protection legislation gets closer to passing the New Mexico State House and Senate, “any gun, anywhere” proponents, including the NRA, are ramping up their efforts to counter the public’s overwhelming support for background checks for gun sales legislation by packing legislators’ inboxes with out of district emails. Representative Joanne Ferrary (D-Dona Ana) brought this issue up, noting that of the hundreds of emails she has received on this hot-button issue, the vast majority were from out of her district and many even from out of the state. Read More
Report: More Than Half of People Who Shot and Killed New Mexico Law Enforcement Officers Were Likely Prohibited From Possessing Guns (but no one checked)
Gun Violence Prevention Facebook Town Hall and Other Upcoming GVP Events
With over 87 percent of New Mexicans (including 84% of gun owners) in support of criminal background checks for gun sales, we need your help to set the record straight. Show your support for this common sense legislation that will keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. Add your name and we’ll hand-deliver your message this week.
After over 6 hours of testimony and debate, house bill 50 (HB50) made it through the Judiciary committee late Friday night and will now move to the floor where it will be voted on by the full House of Representatives. The committee voted 7 to 6 along party lines. The final vote was:
Moms Demand Action, New Mexicans to Prevent Gun Violence and Progress Now NM teamed up to bring a large crowd of gun violence prevention supports to the round house to lobby for background checks for gun transfers.
This is shaping up to be the year New Mexico passes comprehensive background check legislation (it’s about time!)
After years of organizing and building new organizations, our work is paying off and getting noticed by legislators and the press. So far, progressives have showed up in greater numbers than NRA-opponents at each hearing — that momentum is keeping these bills moving.
Two big developments you need to know:
On Tuesday the Senate Public Affairs Committee passed SB48 requiring background checks for gun transfers. Red Mom’s Demand Action t-shirts and blue Progress Now NM stickers showing support for the bill flooded the committee room leaving little room for the opposition. The bill past the committee on a 5 to 3 vote.
After new legislation requiring background checks on gun transfers passed the Senate Public Affairs committee earlier this week, the house companion bill, HB 50, today also cleared its initial hurdle before the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee. A combined effort between Moms Demand Action, New Mexicans to Prevent Gun Violence and Progress Now NM brought out over 100 supporters of the legislation, many who shared personal stories as they testified in favor of the legislation. After over three hours of testimony and debate the bill passed the committee on a vote of 3 to 1 (votes below). It will now move on to the House Judiciary Committee. Join our Gun Violence Prevention Action List to receive updates as the bill moves forward.