Lawmakers in Washington passed a new bill that bans assault weapons in the state, making it one of the few states to have enforced more weapons restrictions.
The bill, which sets out some exceptions to the general ban, was approved by the House on Wednesday after being passed by the Senate earlier this month. With this new bill, at least 60 types of assault weapons are going to be banned. Once the bill is signed by Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) it will go into effect.
There are some exceptions to the law, as those weapons that are owned by people in the state or are inherited are not going to be affected. Law enforcement agencies would also be allowed to continue buying assault weapons.
Inslee, who during his time in Congress in the 1990s had voted in favor of a national assault weapon ban, stated that he was going to be signing the bill. In a statement on Twitter, he noted that Washington was not going to “accept gun violence as normal.” He proceeded to state the bill would also “enact training requirements and a wait period” while seeking to increase accountability among manufacturers and retailers in order to save lives.
This bill is the most comprehensive statewide ban on assault weapons in the country. The bill was passed following a number of mass shootings that have occurred across the U.S. in the past few months. These include a shooting with the use of assault weapons in Nashville, Tennessee where three children and three adults were killed in the school shooting.
In the first 110 days of 2023, there were reportedly 165 mass shootings.