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Sullivan Calls on Republicans to Treat Gun Violence Crisis with Same Urgency as Animal Shelter Use of Schedule VI Biological Products

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SULLIVAN CALLS ON REPUBLICANS TO TREAT GUN VIOLENCE CRISIS WITH SAME URGENCY AS ANIMAL SHELTER USE OF SCHEDULE VI BIOLOGICAL PRODUCTS

RICHMOND, Va.: Today, Delegate Richard C. “Rip” Sullivan, Jr. (D-McLean) spoke out against Republican leaders blocking consideration of HB 198, a gun safety bill that would create risk warrants in Virginia, while fast-tracking a bill related to certain drugs being permitted in animal shelters.

The Republican leadership in the House of Delegates effectively killed HB 198 on February 13th, the day before the Parkland massacre, by refusing to even hold a hearing on the bill before Crossover, yet today proved that that the General Assembly Republican leadership is more than willing and able to take up bills after the so-called “deadline” by which all bills had to pass their respective chambers.

“Since being introduced on Monday, SB 996 has already been hustled through the Senate and was reported out of a House Committee today, teeing it up for passage before the end of session. All the while, HB 198, a bill that would help address the gun violence crisis in Virginia, languishes in the House without having even been heard in subcommittee.”

“Gun violence is a crisis. This is urgent, and Virginians are begging the General Assembly to act. The Republicans just proved that they could move a bill at the last minute if they so choose, so I call on them to listen to their constituents and take up HB 198 before session ends. Simply put, when it comes to preventing gun violence, inaction is indifference and complacency is complicity.”

HB 198 would allow concerned family members and individuals close to a gun owner they believe to be a risk to himself or others to go to a Commonwealth’s Attorney or law enforcement officer and request that they seek a “risk warrant.” If they concur that the person is an immediate risk to himself or others, the Commonwealth’s Attorney or law enforcement officer would then go before a judge to ask for a risk warrant to remove the person’s firearms temporarily. Within 14 days, the court would have to convene a full hearing, ensuring there is full due process.

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Delegate Rip Sullivan represents Virginia's 48th House of Delegates District, which is composed of parts of Arlington and McLean.