Mixed emotions from lawmakers about gun safety laws passing

DELMARVA- U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin expressed both their gratitude and concerns on gun safety laws in a press conference Friday afternoon. They were pleased to see the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act pass the Senate Thursday and the House on Friday

“We have made progress in regards to gun safety issues that are going to make a difference with domestic offenders with red flag laws, with better back ground checks for those under 21 years of age,” U.S. Senator Ben Cardin said.

“It makes gun trafficking a federal crime which had not been the case before,” U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen said.

But they said with excitement, also came disappointment on Thursday as the Supreme Court struck down a New York state law that had restricted who could obtain a permit to carry a gun in public. “We saw an entrenchment with regards to public safety yesterday,” Sen. Cardin said.

While Maryland is one of the states that has similar laws as New York they now have to decide their next steps. Sen. Van Hollen said this decision is going to do damage to Maryland. “I think more concealed weapons being carried by more people in Maryland is only going to reduce public safety not increase it,” Sen. Van Hollen said.

On the other hand, Talbot County Sheriff Joe Gamble doesn’t think the concealed carry decisions will have an impact on violent crime.” I  worked for the state police homicide unit for 20 years, investigating homicides in all the counties in Maryland and some in Baltimore City, you know criminals find ways to get guns, and there’s a lot of good honest people, more so than the public knows that have concealed carry permits right now; and we don’t see any uptick or issues with them being permitted to conceal carry,” Sheriff Gamble said.

And, Sheriff Gamble isn’t the only one agreeing with the decision. “I think Marylander’s who are law abiding who want to obtain a firearm to protect themselves and their family are going to find it much easier to do so now and that is exactly the intent of the second amendment,” Congressman Andy Harris said.

The final vote on the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act was 234 to 193 in the House. The bill will now head to the president’s desk for a signature.

Categories: Delaware, Local News, Maryland