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Missouri Senate Strips Gun Theft Reporting Amendment From Nullification Bill

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio
Mo. Capitol

The Missouri Senate has stripped an amendment from the gun-control nullification bill that would have required an individual to report a stolen gun within 72 hours.

The move comes five days after the National Rifle Association's Institute for Legislative Action announced its opposition to Senate Bill 613 because of the amendment, stating that it would have created a "de facto gun owner registry" in Missouri.  State Sen. JamilahNasheed, D-St. Louis, sponsored the amendment.  She accused the Republican-led Senate of caving to the NRA's wishes.

"(The NRA) really said to those individuals (in the Senate), 'We control you! You don't control yourselves! We don't want to report guns stolen in 72 hours, and because we don't want that, you go back and you reconsider it,'" Nasheed said.  "And guess what they did -- they did just what the NRA told them to do!"

Nasheed delayed the reconsideration vote Monday night by speaking against it on the Senate floor for more than four hours.  Afterward, the Senate voted 22 to 9 to strip Nasheed's amendment from the bill.  The bill was then immediately brought up again for a first-round perfection voice vote, and it was approved, this time without the amendment.

Nasheed had argued that her amendment had the potential to save lives, and that it did not contain any criminal penalties as alleged by the NRA.  But Senate President Pro-tem Tom Dempsey, R-St. Charles, says it could have left victims of gun theft open to lawsuits.

"An individual who lawfully owned a firearm, who had one stolen, would have potentially been civilly liable for not reporting that," Dempsey told reporters after the vote.

If it becomes law, Senate Bill 613 would nullify federal gun control measures in Missouri and make it a misdemeanor for federal officers to enforce those measures within Missouri's borders.  It needs one more full vote by the Senate before moving to the Missouri House. That vote is expected to take place on Thursday.  A similar bill was vetoed last year by Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat.

Follow Marshall Griffin on Twitter:  @MarshallGReport

Marshal was a political reporter for St. Louis Public Radio until 2018.

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