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Senate approves bill to nullify federal gun control laws

Officials who enforce a federal gun control law could face jail time or fines.


The Alabama Senate Thursday passed the Alabama Second Amendment Protection Act. Senate Bill 358 is sponsored by Sen. Gerald Allen, R-Northport.

SB358 would make it a Class C misdemeanor for a state or local official to enforce any federal gun law or executive order that “regulates the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories.”

The penalty could be up to 90 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $5,000. A second offense would be a Class B misdemeanor and bring a sentence of up to six months in jail and/or a fine of up to $7,000.

“This is a piece that will fulfill the oath of office that each of us has taken to protect and defend the Constitution as it relates to the Second Amendment,” Allen said, according to the Montgomery Advertiser. “That’s very important.”

Democrats said that the state has lost several lawsuits in the past challenging federal laws and predicted that this too would ultimately be blocked by the federal courts.

“We are going to get sued, and we are going to lose,” said state Sen. Rodger Smitherman, D-Birmingham, according to the Advertiser.

According to the synopsis:

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“Under existing constitutional law, the federal government may not require a state or its officers to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. This bill would create the Alabama Second Amendment Preservation Act to prohibit the state and its agencies and political subdivisions from participating in the enforcement of any federal act, law, order, rule, or regulation relating to firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition. This bill would also provide criminal penalties for a violation. Under existing constitutional law, the United States Congress is given the authority to regulate interstate commerce. This bill would provide that firearms, firearm accessories, and ammunition that are manufactured in this state and remain in this state, and are therefore only engaged in intrastate commerce, are not subject to federal law or regulation, including registration, under the authority of the United State Congress to regulate interstate commerce.”

The bill now goes to the House where it has been assigned to the House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee.

State Reps. Tommy Hanes, R-Bryant, and Shane Stringer, R-Mobile, have both introduced similar legislation in the House. Tuesday is day 24 of the 2021 Legislative Session.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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