CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE –Today, SB 154, a bill that would prohibit New Hampshire officials from enacting and enforcing federal regulations and executive orders to reduce gun violence, passed the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety committee on a party line vote. After the vote, Ranking Democrat on the committee, Rep. Linda Harriott-Gathright (D-Nashua) released the following statement:
“Prohibiting New Hampshire officials from cooperating with federal laws and regulations is a disturbing overreach of the state legislature and a threat to public safety. SB 154 solves no existing problem in this state but sadly has serious consequences for the people of New Hampshire. Banning New Hampshire law enforcement and judges from helping to stop the sale and creation of illegal weapons, crack down on firearm trafficking or enact programs to reduce gun violence in our streets is not only alarming but likely unconstitutional. Even more concerning is that this bill would prohibit state and federal officials from working together in the wake of a tragedy from gun violence should one occur here in New Hampshire.
Similar pieces of legislation brought forth in other states like Arkansas have been vetoed due to their unconstitutionality, which should be signal enough to legislators in New Hampshire that this will not stand. While sadly a controversial statement, it is possible to both preserve our second amendment freedoms and protect public safety. Efforts by the Biden Administration or any subsequent Presidential administration elected by the American people to reduce deadly gun violence should not be blocked here in New Hampshire.”