BILL: Don’t Let Healey Regulate Guns
State House News Service
BOSTON — Attorney General Maura Healey would be stripped of her authority to regulate firearms under a bill filed Friday afternoon by the state Senate minority leader.
Sen. Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester, filed his “act to protect due process and strengthen public safety” 12 days after Healey announced her office would step up enhancement of the state’s 1998 assault-weapons ban on what she described as “copycat” guns that are similar in construction to banned guns or have interchangeable key parts.
Healey’s announcement was praised by anti-violence advocates and members of the state’s Congressional delegation, but was met with swift backlash from gun owners who interpreted the move as an overreach that circumvented the legislative process.
“It’s very insidious, what she did, and as far as we’re concerned it’s a clear abuse of power,” Gun Owners’ Action League Executive Director Jim Wallace said Friday.
GOAL plans a lobby day today, the penultimate day of formal legislative sessions for the year, and in a Friday newsletter urged members to contact lawmakers in support of Tarr’s legislation.
Tarr’s office confirmed Friday afternoon that the bill had been filed, with Republican Sens. Donald Humason of Westfield, Ryan Fattman of Webster and Patrick O’Connor of Weymouth as cosponsors. A Tarr aide said he expected additional lawmakers to sign on to the bill.