Delaware lawmakers continue to make progress on several gun proposals introduced by Gov. Jack Markell earlier this year. At this time, the focus is on legislation designed to restrict the sale and use of large-capacity magazines that’s now moving forward.
This comes after a 3-2 House committee vote on Wednesday which serves as good news to Rep. Larry Mitchell, the lead sponsor on House Bill 58. Under the bill, high-capacity magazines capable of firing more than 10 rounds would be banned, including the manufacture, sale, transfer, purchase, or delivery of such ammunition. They’ll even be prohibited in public places.
“These large-capacity clips, which can carry 30, 60 or even 100 rounds, serve little purpose other than to fire as many bullets as quickly as possible without having to reload as often,” said Rep. Mitchell, D-Elsmere.
Rep. Mitchell also pointed to several mass shootings where large-capacity magazines were used as examples that may support such a ban.
“In Tucson, the shooter was stopped by ordinary citizens who tackled and disarmed him when he stopped to reload. In Newtown, 11 students were able to escape that horrific shooting when the shooter stopped to reload one of his 30-round clips,” said Mitchell.
Colin Goddard, 27, who was shot four times and is a survivor of the 2007 Virginia Tech shootings is urging legislators, as well, to pass the bill.
“Fundamentally, reducing the capacity of magazines reduces the capability of gunmen,” said Goddard. “Delaware has limited the number of bullets people can use when hunting to six rounds in order to help protect wildlife. It makes sense to limit the number of bullets you can use in everyday society to protect people.”
“Colin’s story is compelling and personal. Colin could easily be your son, your friend, your neighbor and he is living proof of what can happen when a gun is in the wrong person’s hands,” said Gov. Markell, D-Del.
As for the people who already legally own large-magazines, House Bill 58 will prohibit gun owners from possesing both a clip and firearm at certain venues and shooting ranges.