Leonid Brezhnev would be proud of Floyd Prozanski, Oregon’s leading anti gun state senator. Not content with passing the grandiose “universal background check” bill last year that was supposed to solve all of the world’s problems, Prozanski has now introduced a bill that would allow people to declare someone to be having a “mental health emergency”, which would result in a 30 day “hold” being placed on the accused’s ability to purchase a firearm. The accused would not even know they are on the no-buy list, as they would not be informed of the accusation unless they tried to purchase a firearm and go through the background check process. The accuser’s name would not be available to the accused. Worse yet, “mental health emergency” is not defined, and is largely arbitrary.
LC 250 was formally introduced on Friday, January 15th. The bill is officially sponsored by the entire Senate judiciary committee, which Prozansky chairs, because the legislators themselves are limited 2 bills each for the upcoming short, 35 day session. By introducing it as a “committee” sponsored bill, the party in control can use this as a loophole to introduce however many bills they want.
If someone ends up on the no-buy list, and they want to get their 2nd Amendment rights back, they would have to pay out of their own pocket to see a health care provider or petition the courts in order to be declared “not a threat”, then they have to take that documentation to the state police firearms unit. The bill would limit the hold to 30 days, but there’s nothing that prevents the secret accuser from filing another accusation.
Oregon Firearms Federation calls LC 250 “maybe the most dangerous gun bill ever”.
From the OFF Website:
As you know, this bill will allow totally unqualified people to make anonymous accusations against others and claim those people are experiencing “mental health emergencies.” Those people lose their rights to buy a firearm.
These accusations will not be investigated, the accused will not know the accusation has been made unless they try to buy a gun nor will they be allowed to know who their accuser is or how long their rights will be suspended.
If they choose to challenge the accusations, they assume the full burden of proving they are not mentally ill and all of the expense.
The Committee approved the bill on a 1 to three vote. All Democrats voted yes, Senator Thatcher voted no and Senator Jeff Kruse is recovering from surgery and was absent.
The Democrats are:
Floyd Prozanski Sen.FloydProzanski@state.or.us
Sara Gelser Sen.SaraGelser@state.or.us
Diane Rosenbaum Sen.DianeRosenbaum@state.or.us
The Republican who voted to protect your rights is:
Senator Kim Thatcher Sen.KimThatcher@state.or.us
Today’s vote was not a vote to pass the bill out of committee. It was to formally introduce the draft as a bill. The next step will be actual hearings on the bill during the coming session in February.
It is interesting to note that another draft is being considered. This is LC 217 which establishes a tip hotline to report threats to students such as “cyber bullying.” That proposed legislation would require that any tip be investigated to determine if it is authentic. LC 250 provides no such protection for people who will lose their gun rights.
We will continue to monitor this legislation as it moves through the system. Be prepared to take action and contact your legislators who can be found here.
Prozanski, who also serves as a Lane county prosecutor, does not see this as a violation of due process rights, and makes the excuse that person accused can just pay money to the state to be declared innocent. He told KXL radio that the bill will be heard during the first week of the session, which starts in early February.