GOAL Post 2013-SPECIAL 3
Legislative Update from Olympia 31 May 2013
SENATOR MIKE CARRELL (R-28) PASSES
LOSS SPLITS SENATE 24-24
STILL NO FOCUS ON GUNS — YET
GUN CONTROL INITIATIVE FUNDING GETS A BOOST
SCANDALS DISTRACT ANTIS IN D.C.
UN RELEASES ATT FOR SIGNATURE/RATIFICATION
TECH ACTIVIST CONFERENCE IN BELLEVUE TOMORROW
On Wednesday of this week Washington gun owners lost one of our closest friends in the legislature, State Senator Mike Carrell, Republican, of Lakewood. Carrell, a retired educator, passed away on May 29th. He was diagnosed earlier this year with a form of pre-leukemia, and had been undergoing treatment for several months. For 18 years he was one of the strongest defenders of the right to keep and bear arms in Washington. Mike was first elected to the House of Representatives in the Republican Revolution of 1994, and served five terms there before moving up to the state Senate in 2004. He was just reelected to a third Senate term last November.
Carrel’s death may spark a crisis for the ruling Majority Coalition (now only 22 Republicans and two Democrats organizing with Republicans versus 24 Democrats) in the state Senate. It will be June 11th before the Pierce County Council can appoint a successor to Carrell, coincidentally the last day of the current special session. Meanwhile, there is a Constitutional question as to whether the Lieutenant Governor, as President of the Senate, is allowed to vote as a tie-breaker on bills. While the focus is on the passage of a biennial budget (the Democrat-controlled House passed a budget with more than $1 BILLION in tax increases, the Majority Coalition-led Senate previously passed a balanced budget), this could also have implications for gun bills as well.
The procedure for succession calls for the Pierce County Republican Party to nominate three possible replacements. In a meeting last night, they chose former County Councilman Dick Muri, current freshman Representative Steve O’Ban, and University Place City Councilman Javier Figuroa, in that order of preference. Now we wait until at least 11 June for the County Council to review the nominations and select Carrell’s successor. That individual will serve until the 2014 general election, when he will undergo a confirmation election to fill the remaining two years of the term.
Today is Day 19 of the 30-day special session. SO FAR there has been zero action taken on gun bills. Given the loss of Senator Carrell, there is no way to guarantee that situation will hold. It likely will, because any gun bill would still have to pass out of the Senate Law & Justice Committee, not likely at this time. The critical issue still facing the legislature is a biennial budget, made worse now by the damage to the I-5 bridge in Burlington. The Democrat budget tax increases go FAR beyond any bridge-building.
Allegedly 1,200 supporters attended a fund raiser in Seattle and pledged $750,000 to support an initiative for “gun safety.” There is no language for such an initiative, so at this time I cannot comment on it’s potential impact on gun owners. More as it develops.
The circus continues in Washington, D.C. with most attention focused on the three scandals currently distracting many of the pols: the IRS, Benghazi and Justice Department snooping on journalists (notice I successfully resisted adding a -gate to the three). There may be some back room negotiating ongoing on S. 649, but nothing specific has emerged.
This coming Monday, 3 June, the United Nations will formally sign the Arms Trade Treaty passed last month and open it to signature by member nations. Many member states are expected to sign in the formal ceremony on Monday, but it remains open for signature indefinitely. Obama administration officials have indicated the President will sign the treaty sooner rather than later, although it does not appear he will travel to New York City Monday. ANY TREATY must still be ratified by a 2/3 vote of the U.S. Senate to become law…
Regret short fuse, but a “tech activist” conference will be conducted tomorrow in Bellevue. The conference runs from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time and takes place at the Coast Hotel, 625 116th Avenue in Bellevue.
The Second Amendment Foundation is a co-sponsor, and the event will inform attendees how to make best use of technical resources in promoting their message.
There is a $50 registration fee, although that may be waived for up to 20 students. For further information, see the links below.
Registration page: http://techactivist.eventbrite.com/
All bills filed in during the regular session are available and may be acted upon. At this time there are no new gun bills.
GOAL POSITION ON BILLS
No active bills at this time
LEGISLATIVE HOT LINE: You may reach your Representatives and Senator by calling the Legislative Hotline at 1-800-562-6000. Toll free!!! The hearing impaired may obtain TDD access at 1-800-635-9993. Also toll free!!!
1-800-562-6000 TDD 1-800-635-9993
OTHER DATA: Copies of pending legislation (bills), legislative schedules and other information are available on the legislature’s web site at “www.leg.wa.gov“. Bills are available in Acrobat (.pdf) format. You may download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader from Adobe’s web site (http://www.adobe.com). You may also obtain hard copy bills, initiatives, etc, in the mail from the Legislative Bill Room FREE OF CHARGE by calling 1-360-786-7573. Copies of bills may also be ordered toll free by calling the Legislative Hotline at (800) 562-6000. You may also hear floor and committee hearing action live at http://www.tvw.org/ (you need “RealAudio” to do this, available free at the TVW web site).
By reading the House and Senate “bill reports” (hbr, sbr) for each bill, you can see how individual committee members voted. By reading the “roll call” for each bill, you can see how the entire House or Senate voted on any bill. The beauty of the web site is that ALL this information is available, on line, to any citizen.
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Upcoming WAC gun show(s):
Monroe 8-9 June
Puyallup 22-23 June
“The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men.”
Article 1, Section 24
Constitution of the State of Washington
Copyright 2013 Gun Owners Action League of WA