Every one of the 50 states has some kind of firearms preemption law to some degree or other. This makes perfect sense, as otherwise each town, county, and local government can enact a local ordinance to invalidate your right to keep and bear arms. You could easily be placed in jail for an inadvertent violation of an ordinance that you never knew existed, just because you crossed an invisible political boundary. Pennsylvania has such a law, and it’s a well thought out example. There is only one problem; the means to enforce it is weak . . .
To prevent local governments form flouting the rule of law, Pennsylvania has passed a simple revision to their preemption statute: If a local government violates the law, they can be sued, and they have to pay the legal fees of the plaintiff if they lose. Once the suit has been filed, they can’t simply revoke the law and walk away, smug in knowing that they cost those attempting to protect their rights, and without having to pay anything. It is a trick that’s been used successfully in Pennsylvania, but appears to be headed for the dust bin of history.
HB80 started out as HB 2011 and recently passed the House by a vote of 143 to 54. It moved on to the Senate as HB1243 where it passed the Senate 36-14. It originally passed by 32-16 as an amendment to another bill, then later revised to 36-14. Because of the amendment maneuver, HB80 had to have a concurrence vote in the House where it passed again, 138 to 56. It now goes to NRA A-rated Governor Tom Corbett for his signature who said that he will sign the bill.
©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.