Primary sponsor said the bill authorizing police search of homes without a warrant is probably unconstitutional. Artwork by Andy Warhol.
Democrats in Washington State are in full retreat after it was reported they are working on legislation that would nullify the Fourth Amendment rights of citizens who own firearms designated as “assault weapons” by the state.
“In order to continue to possess an assault weapon that was legally possessed on the effective date of this section, the person possessing shall … safely and securely store the assault weapon. The sheriff of the county may, no more than once per year, conduct an inspection to ensure compliance with this subsection,” SB 5737 states.
If enacted, the law will allow police to search without a court-issued search warrant the homes of owners of legally purchased firearms.
Sen. Adam Kline of Seattle, a Democrat who is described by the Seattle Times as “hyper-attuned to civil-liberties issues,” sponsored the legislation without reading the eight page bill. “I made a mistake,” he told the newspaper. “I frankly should have vetted this more closely.”
The primary sponsor of the bill, Sen. Ed Murray, also a Democrat from Seattle, condemned the bill subsection authorizing police to search homes without a warrant. He said the plan to harass and intimidate legal gun owners is probably unconstitutional.
In order to save face, Washington Democrats blamed staff and promised that a new bill without the police state subsection will be introduced.
Murray said it will take time to condition the public to surrender their Second Amendment rights. “We will only win if we reach out and continue to change the hearts and minds of Washingtonians,” he said.