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Gov. Parson signs HB 85 into law, creating the Second Amendment Preservation Act in Missouri

Governor Mike Parson will announce his choice to fill the vacancy in the Supreme Court of...
Governor Mike Parson will announce his choice to fill the vacancy in the Supreme Court of Missouri.(Governor Mike Parson/Facebook)
Published: Jun. 12, 2021 at 1:11 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 12, 2021 at 5:31 PM CDT
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LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo. (KY3) - Missouri Gov. Mike Parson has signed House Bill 85 into law Saturday, creating the Second Amendment Preservation Act.

Parson signed the bill during a ceremony Saturday afternoon in Lee’s Summit near Kansas City.

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The bill, introduced by Rep. Jered Taylor (R-Republic) in January, prohibits the enforcement of federal gun laws by local law enforcement agencies.

“I think anything on the federal level as it relates to the second amendment is an infringement,” said Taylor in February. “If anyone were to pass gun legislation, it should be on the state level... We’re just telling the federal government we’re not going to help you enforce your federal gun laws.”

Under the bill, Missouri agencies with police who knowingly enforce any federal laws could be sued and fined up to $50,000 per violating officer.

“Throughout my law enforcement career and now as Governor of the state of Missouri, I have and always will stand for the Constitution and our Second Amendment rights,” said Gov. Parson. “This legislation today draws a line in the sand and demonstrates our commitment to reject any attempt by the federal government to circumvent the fundamental right Missourians have to keep and bear arms to protect themselves and their property.”

Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott is among the law enforcement leaders who have shown some concerns about the ramifications of the bill. However, he pointed out during a February interview with KY3 that he is not against the intent of the legislation.

“I believe the goal is we don’t want a federal gun grab and I totally agree with the concept,” Arnott said. “I do believe in the general direction the bill was going in trying to keep Missouri citizens rights protected to keep and bear arms. But there’s some language that was pretty harsh to go against law enforcement and some gray area that would prevent us from referring cases over to the U.S. Attorney’s office.”

Missouri House Minority Leader Crystal Quade (D-Springfield) released the following statement in opposition of the bill Friday:

“House Bill 85 is a radical, dangerous and obviously unconstitutional attempt to declare that Missouri will refuse to follow federal gun laws. When people are looking for real solutions on crime, policing and public safety, Governor Parson and the Republican legislature have instead chosen to preserve Missouri’s growing reputation for extremist and dangerous laws. The new law even allows criminals who violate federal gun law to sue our local law enforcement officers for a minimum $50,000 fine if they in any way assist with federal investigations. It quite literally defunds the police and gives that taxpayer money to convicted criminals. It is long past time for Republicans in Jefferson City to stop the political grandstanding, take their jobs as leaders seriously and pass real solutions to crime in our state.”

Missouri lawmakers passed a similar bill in 2013, which was vetoed by then-Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat. The Legislature fell just shy of overriding Nixon’s veto.

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