Missouri lawmakers pass high-profile gun bill

By Summer Ballentine The Associated Press
The Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri's Republican-led Legislature has passed a high-profile measure to ban local enforcement of federal gun laws,.

The measure would block enforcement of federal gun laws by local police, an effort growing in popularity in Republican-led states under Democratic President Joe Biden's administration.

“The Second Amendment is under attack,” bill sponsor Republican Rep. Jered Taylor said. “It’s under attack by the Democrats, particularly the Biden administration.”

The GOP-led House voted 111-42 along party lines to send the firearms bill to Republican Gov. Mike Parson before adjourning the 2021 regular session. The action came with just an hour to spare before lawmakers' 6 p.m. Friday deadline.

Most state and federal gun laws are the same, and federal law enforcement could still enforce gun rules that are in federal law only. The push for the bill is driven by fear that Biden will enact sweeping limits on firearms.

Idaho Gov. Brad Little last Tuesday signed similar legislation aimed at thwarting executive actions by Biden to combat gun violence.

Missouri Democrats argued the bill is unconstitutional and predicted it would quickly be struck down by the courts.

“It's embarrassing for our state for us to pass this bill claiming that federal law is null and void and unconstitutional," Democratic St. Louis Rep. Peter Merideth said.