SALEM, Ore. – The gun debate in Salem is heating up once again.
Oregon Democratic lawmakers and the Attorney General are backing a gun violence prevention package that includes three different bills.
Oregon Republicans are pushing back, including new Curry County State Representative Court Boice.
“[The bills are] extreme, and that’s why they are not getting Republican and overall support,” Boice explained. “But we turn back to gun safety teaching kids. It’s not a car that’s a weapon, but it’s the person behind the gas pedal.”
The three bills in the package would raise the age requirement for gun purchase and possession for many from 18 to 21, it would ban untraceable guns, also known as ghost guns, and it would give local governments the choice to restrict firearms and concealed carry in their facilities.
According to State Representative Lily Morgan from Grants Pass, Democrats trying to push these bills through as an omnibus bill makes it more difficult to support.
“There is not a way to take a piece of any of these bills individually,” Morgan said. “You have to look at them as a whole, and the Supreme Court has ruled that several of these factors are not constitutional, are not lawful, so it is taking people’s rights away.”
Representative Morgan said that no advocates of gun possession were consulted in the writing of the bills.
Meanwhile, backers said that it aims to respect the rights of gun owners and at the same time make a difference in public safety.
“I believe that now is the time for responsible gun owners to step up,” Monmouth State Representative Paul Evans said on Tuesday when the package was introduced.
Representative Morgan, though, disagrees with these three bills being a solution.
“Nobody wants to see gun violence,” Morgan said. “We are all opposed to the violence that we see both with guns and other weapons or just in general with how people are treating other people. These bills will not address that.”
The bills have not been voted on.
They will be discussed more in the House on Tuesday.
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