The Virginia House opted not to vote on a controversial gun measure Wednesday that would prohibit state agencies and employees from assisting federal authorities in enforcing new restrictions on gun ownership or the private transfer of guns and ammunition.
A House committee passed the measure last week, but, according to the Virginian-Pilot, it was sent to the Appropriations Committee on a voice vote Wednesday for review of its fiscal impact.
The sponsor of the bill, Del. Bob Marshall, complained that this was simply an attempt to quietly dump the bill, but there seemed to be legitimate concern that such a bill could risk federal law enforcement grants to the state.
House Democrats had tried to vote to kill the bill outright, but did not have enough votes to succeed.
Here’s the text of the bill:
Prevent any agency, political subdivision, or employee of Virginia from assisting the Federal government of the United States in any investigation, prosecution, detention, arrest, search, or seizure, under the authority of any federal statute enacted, or Executive Order or regulation issued, after December 31, 2012, infringing the individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms by imposing new restrictions on private ownership or private transfer of firearms, firearm magazines, ammunition, or components thereof.
Confused as to what it actually means? Not Larry Sabato summed it up this way:
If there is a certain type of gun clip banned in future federal legislation that is found at a crime scene, the FBI would want to know where the illegal weaponry came from in order to track down and find more of the gang members. Under this legislation, if the Virginia State Police or local county police had that information already they could not share it with the FBI.
IN OTHER NEWS:
* Tuesday’s release of the District’s annual financial audit showed that one dead taxpayer is responsible for a $50 million contribution to the city. Question is, who was it? (Washington Post)
* Gov. O’Malley delivered his State of the State last night and called on lawmakers to repeal the state’s death penalty (NBC 4)
Politico got a copy of Cuccinelli’s forthcoming book and said it’s a “a 252-page tea party jeremiad of blistering attacks on government in general and President Barack Obama in particular that could make it difficult to broaden his appeal to the kinds of voters he needs to win in November.”
* The latest Washington City Paper cover story is on the firing and rehiring of 18 District police officers and reporter Alan Suderman writes that “interviews with several police officers and officials involved in the firings, as well as a review of hundreds of pages of city and court documents, leave a picture of an arbitrary, biased, and politically motivated police discipline process.”
* Greater Greater Washington reports that the H streetcar is still on target to be completed in late 2013, and won’t be delayed until 2014.
* A group of Maryland lawmakers introduced legislation that would require all cyclists to wear a helmet. (DCist)
* Mayor Gray unveils his plan Wednesday to help improve job training, health care and social services for newly released offenders. (Washington Post)
* McDonnell’s transportation plan passes its fist hurdle in the House (Free Lance-Star)
* The Virginia House Education Committee approved a bill that would develop a system of grading public schools on an A to F scale. (AP)
* The GOP is trying to remake their national brand, but Virginia is making it tough for the party. “In the eyes of party strategists, Virginia’s off-year elections represent a first opportunity to bounce back from the losses of 2012 … If only the Republican state legislature, local conservative leadership and de facto gubernatorial nominee could stick to the talking points. (Politico)
* Robert McCartney: McDonnell’s , $1.4 billion highway outside Hampton Roads that “qualifies as a “Road for Nobody.”” (Washington Post)