Waiting period is baked into gun ballot measure in Oregon

Oct 26, 2022, 11:11 AM | Updated: 12:03 pm
FILE - Backers of a proposed initiative that would require individuals to secure permits to buy fir...

FILE - Backers of a proposed initiative that would require individuals to secure permits to buy firearms and ban large-capacity magazines deliver the signatures of thousands of voters on July 8, 2022, to state election offices in Salem, Ore. (AP Photo/Andrew Selsky, file)

(AP Photo/Andrew Selsky, file)

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A waiting and vetting period would be baked into gun purchases in Oregon if a measure on the November statewide ballot passes.

If voters approve the measure Nov. 8, buying a gun would first involve the potential purchaser obtaining a permit, which requires a number of steps supporters of the initiative say would save lives. The measure also bans large capacity gun magazines.

The ballot measure is aimed at saving lives from suicide — in Oregon, 82% of gun deaths are suicides — mass shootings and other gun violence.

The gun safety initiative gained momentum after mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, New York, with more volunteers joining the effort, which was led by interfaith leaders.

“We’re making a strong, strong push and the coalition is just growing by the day,” the Rev. Mark Knutson, one of the chief petitioners, said over the phone last week. “Everybody’s working hard in the next three weeks.”

He said volunteers are canvassing door-to-door, erecting lawn signs and reaching out to voters by phone.

Former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head in a mass shooting in 2011 that killed six people, said bringing gun safety initiatives straight to voters is important because “our political leaders fail to act.”

“Mass shootings have become increasingly frequent,” Giffords wrote in the Oregon voters’ pamphlet. “We can choose to vote and make a difference.”

She leads Giffords, an organization dedicated to saving lives from gun violence. The group donated $100,000 to the Oregon effort, according to Ballotpedia.

Opponents say the measure would infringe on Constitutionally protected gun rights.

It would create “a costly bureaucratic nightmare to make firearms ownership difficult for some, and nearly impossible for many,” said Kerry Spurgin, president of the Oregon State Shooting Association.

The measure would require a permit to purchase any gun. To qualify for a permit, valid for five years, an applicant would need to complete an approved firearm safety course, pay a fee, provide personal information, submit to fingerprinting and photographing and pass a criminal background check. It would also ban large capacity magazines over 10 rounds, except for current owners, law enforcement and the military.

The state police would create a firearms database. Applicants would apply for the permit from the local police chief, county sheriff or their designees.

Among those opposing the measure is the Portland chapter of the Socialist Rifle Association, a left-wing gun group that aims “to combat the toxic, right-wing, and exclusionary firearm culture in place today.”

“Law enforcement should not be responsible for deciding who is allowed to be armed, especially when they have a long and recent history of oppressing marginalized groups,” the chapter wrote in the voters’ pamphlet.

Miles Pendleton, president of the Eugene-Springfield branch of the NAACP, told Oregon Public Broadcasting he appreciates that concern but believes the measure would ultimately increase safety for people of color who are disproportionately affected by gun violence.

Also among those in support were the state affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers, the Oregon Medical Association and the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.

Two of the three chief petitioners are clergy — Knutson and Rabbi Michael Cahana, who respectively head a Lutheran church and a synagogue in Portland.

Knutson compared the broad-based effort to address gun violence to the civil rights movements in the 1960s that were led by church figures like the Rev. Martin Luther King.

When Knutson and Cahana and volunteers delivered boxes containing more than 160,000 voter signatures to election officials in Salem in July, they sang “We Shall Overcome” and other liberation songs.

There were more than enough verified signatures to put the initiative on the ballot. Oregon is the only state in America with a gun safety initiative in the 2022 elections, according to Sean Holihan, state legislative director for Giffords.

The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association opposes the measure and predicted that if it is approved, it would be litigated as unconstitutional.

The U.S. Supreme Court last June told federal appeals courts to revisit cases involving laws in California and New Jersey that limit the number of bullets a gun magazine can hold. That came days after the court ruled that Americans have a right to carry firearms in public for self-defense.

The measure does not require a certain number of days to elapse between the purchase of a firearm and when the buyer can take possession of that gun, which Giffords says is required in California, Rhode island and Washington DC. But Knutson noted that under the measure, there’s a delay in between deciding to get a gun and obtaining one, which would reduce the risk of suicides, which can be an impulsive act.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Environmentalists fight huge utility’s long-term contracts

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Distributors for the nation’s largest public utility signed onto what amounted to “never-ending” contracts that unfairly tied them to power generated by the Tennessee Valley Authority, a lawyer argued Thursday as she represents environmental groups in a lawsuit. Southern Environmental Law Center lawyer Amanda Garcia spoke in Memphis federal court in […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

Vermont settles religious schools tuition lawsuits

The Vermont Agency of Education and several school districts will pay tuition costs and legal fees to five families to settle lawsuits challenging the state’s practice of not paying for students to attend religious schools if their towns do not have a public school. In court filings late Wednesday, the two sides agreed to dismiss […]
16 hours ago
FILE - Former film producer Harvey Weinstein appears in court at the Clara Shortridge Foltz Crimina...
Associated Press

Weinstein lawyer in closing: ‘Tears do not make truth’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An attorney for Harvey Weinstein at his Los Angeles rape and sexual assault trial told jurors Thursday that prosecutors’ case relies entirely on asking them to trust women whose testimony showed they were untrustworthy. “Take my word for it,” Jackson told jurors in his closing argument. “Five words that sum up […]
16 hours ago
FILE - Democratic Arizona Gov.-elect Katie Hobbs speaks at a victory rally, Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2022,...
Associated Press

Arizona judge orders county to immediately certify election

PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona judge on Thursday ordered Cochise County officials to certify the midterm election results by the end of the day, saying Republican supervisors broke the law when they refused to sign off on the vote count by this week’s deadline. Two Republicans on the county’s three-member board of supervisors have not […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

10 Los Angeles students appear to OD on cannabis edibles

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ten Los Angeles students appear to have overdosed on cannabis edibles Thursday at their middle school in the San Fernando Valley, officials said. The students, between 13 and 14 years old, were in mild to moderate distress at Van Nuys Middle School around 10:30 a.m., according to the Los Angeles Fire […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

How major US stock indexes fared Thursday 12/1/2022

Stocks ended mixed after an uneven day of trading and bond yields fell broadly after the government reported that a measure of inflation that’s closely watched by the Federal Reserve eased in October. The S&P 500 ended 0.1% lower Thursday. The benchmark index is coming off its second straight monthly gain. A day earlier, markets […]
16 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet edges out cable for everyday use

In a world where technology drives so much of our daily lives, a lack of high-speed internet can be a major issue.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
Waiting period is baked into gun ballot measure in Oregon