DFL Senator: Leave Ban on Assault Weapons to the Feds

By KBJR News 1

February 19, 2013 Updated Feb 19, 2013 at 6:35 PM CDT

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) - The chair of the Committee on Judiciary, Senator Ron Latz (DFL-St. Louis Park), says he wants the hearings to focus on proposals that would keep guns out of the hands of people that shouldn't have them.

Nearly 10 bills are expected to be heard during the two-day hearing on Thursday and Friday.

The Senator says those bills will focus on background checks and potential loopholes in current Minnesota law.

The House committee hearings several weeks ago analyzed proposals for banning assault weapons and banning high capacity magazines.

Sen. Latz said it shouldn't be up to the state to take those issues on.

"Those were two really hot button issues that I know generated a lot of heat in the house, and it would be a real uphill battle to pass those in the senate, I think they're best dealt with at the federal level because of the interstate commerce aspects of bans of particular types of weapons or machinery," the Senator said.

The Senator says this isn't the time to add fuel to the fire, but he agrees there is an obvious need for action.

Gun control opponents claim many of the proposals on the table are an infringement of their second amendment rights.

“From those that want to ban all guns to those that want the ability to defend themselves by any means possible, there is a lot of passion surrounding this issue,” said Sen. Latz. “As the Senate Judiciary Chair, it is my goal to find effective solutions with common ground.

Opponents expressed that concern during the House hearings and they're expected to do it again this week.

Kevin Jacobsen
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