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Press Release

LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF NEW MEXICO APPLAUDS TABLING OF ‘ASSAULT WEAPONS’ BAN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
03/01/13

Contact:

Mike Blessing, State Chair
(505) 249-1248
  Alternate: Elizabeth Hanes, Press Secretary
(505) 205-0253

[ALBUQUERQUE] – The Libertarian Party of New Mexico (LPNM) applauds the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee decision to table House Bill 402, which would have made it illegal for most New Mexicans to own an “assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition feeding device.”

“This was a surprisingly sensible decision by committee members, given there’s no clear definition of what an ‘assault weapon’ actually is and because gun bans only serve to disarm the law-abiding public,” said LPNM State Chair Mike Blessing. “Furthermore, the ridiculous wording of the proposed law made it virtually unenforceable.”

The ban would have exempted several groups of individuals, including law enforcement officers and military personnel. More problematic, the bill would have exempted “a person [who] possesses an assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition-feeding device for use exclusively at a firing range owned and operated by a gun dealer licensed in New Mexico and the assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition-feeding device is located on the premises of the firing range.”

“You have to ask what the point of banning ‘assault weapons’ is if a person is still allowed to own one as long as they claim they’re only going to use it at a firing range,” Blessing added. “It’s idiotic to think this clause could possibly be enforced. If a police officer stopped you while you were initially transporting your so-called assault weapon to the firing range, would you be fined or jailed? And who would be tasked with ensuring people who own ‘assault weapons’ were keeping them at a firing range at all times? It’s ridiculous.”

The term “assault weapon” currently enjoys no singular legal definition. It’s normally used to refer to the cosmetic features of semi-automatic firearms and can refer to firearms of any caliber. For example, a “military style” semi-automatic .22 caliber rifle may be designated an “assault weapon,” whereas a common semi-automatic .22 caliber “hunting style” rifle would not be considered an “assault weapon.”

“The LPNM opposes gun control laws at any level and considers them unconstitutional,” Blessing added. “The LPNM will continue to vigorously fight to protect the Second Amendment rights of New Mexico citizens.”

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ABOUT THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF NEW MEXICO

Established in 1971, LPNM is the third-largest political party in the state. LPNM seeks to preserve personal liberty and freedom by opposing new or more restrictive laws, new or more expensive spending programs, and new or higher taxes. Guided by the Non-Aggression Principle, which opposes the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals, Libertarians promote peace, personal freedom, and unfettered capitalism.

Official LPNM website: [TK]