AZ lawmakers look to pass own gun legislationPosted: Updated:
The debate over gun control in America is taking a turn through the Arizona State Capitol.
A day after President Barrack Obama pushed his proposals on gun control, background checks and mental health, Arizona state lawmakers have already started drawing up gun legislation of their own.
- House Minority Leader Chad Campbell (D-Phoenix) has created a bill that would:
- Triple funding for school resource officers.
- Double the number of school counselors.
- Establish a school safety fund.
- Close the gun show loophole and require all gun buyers go through a background check.
- Reinstate Arizona's concealed weapon permit law.
"These types of things are common sense," said Campbell. "They wont take away a gun from any responsible gun owner. I'm a gun owner myself. All it will do is prevent the wrong people from getting guns."
Sen. Rich Crandall, R-Mesa, has a similar proposal that would:
- Add 300 more resource officers across the state.
- Boost funding for mental health services.
- Provide additional school counselor training.
And Arizona lawmakers won't stop there.
There's already talk at the state Capitol of pushing legislation to expand the rights of gun owners even further.
Some of the bills expected to come up this session would:
- Eliminate gun-free zones, allowing people to carry their weapons into public buildings and libraries.
- Arm teachers so they can protect students if an intruder walks into class.
- Allow guns on college campuses.
Political insider Jaime Molera won't be surprised to see even more gun legislation come up, but he doesn't believe most of the bills will go through.
"My sense is that at the end of the day it will probably be a draw," said Molera. "I don't think either side has enough votes to get any of those bills passed."
Molera said is more likely that lawmakers can come together on increasing funding for school resource officers and mental health.
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