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Group behind I-1639 will now push for magazine restrictions, open-carry ban

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Dordon Brack, aims a semi-automatic AR-15 that is for sale at Good Guys Guns & Range on February 15, 2018 in Orem, Utah. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

SEATTLE, Wash. — The group behind raising the age to purchase semi-automatic rifles has set its sights on restricting high-capacity magazines, increasing gun-free zones and limiting open-carry laws.

And they’re not ruling out more initiatives in Washington, even as the state recently approved some of the strictest gun regulations in the country.

The Alliance for Gun Responsibility released its 2019 legislative priorities.  Officials with the group said the proposed restrictions would go a long way toward keeping guns out of dangerous hands.

The group’s main priorities for 2019 are:

  • Restricting access to high-capacity magazines.
  • Restricting access to firearms to people who have been held in mental treatment on an involuntary 72-hour hold.
  • Increasing protection order laws to include threats of hate crimes.
  • Requiring safety training to get a concealed pistol license.
  • Giving local authorities the option to ban open carrying.
  • Extending gun-free zones to child care and early learning centers.
  • Destroying guns confiscated in a crime.

A few years ago, the Alliance for Gun Responsibility promoted the universal background check initiative. Then in 2016, it was the extreme risk protection measure.

Renee Hopkins, the CEO for the Alliance for Gun Responsibility, thinks this legislative session will be one of the most receptive to gun reform in the state’s history. The Democratic majority increased, and many new lawmakers got there because of their commitment to gun reform, she said.

“We’re looking forward to being in Olympia this year with a whole new host of elected officials,” Hopkins said. “Many of whom ran on gun violence prevention and won on gun violence prevention.”

Hopkins would not rule out constructing another ballot measure if the state Legislature doesn’t act. Still, she said she’d rather see the legislative action.

“Our number one goal is to hold our legislators accountable and make sure they’re doing their job,” she said. “And their job is to pass common-sense gun laws.”

Any major changes to gun laws would likely mean a court battle. The NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation filed a lawsuit last month against I-1639, claiming it violated state and federal laws.

“This measure will have a chilling effect on the exercise of the constitutional rights of honest citizens while having no impact on criminals, and we will not let it go unchallenged,” Second Amendment Foundation Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb said.

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