If state legislators in Oregon have their way, certain gun owners will be subject to warrantless searches by police. That’s right, legislators in these two states have proposed bills that would rob these individuals of their rights simply because they happen to own an “assault weapon.”
Last week, I noted that legislators in Washington had proposed a bill that would allow for warrantless searches of gun owners who happen to own an “assault weapon.” That specific part was eventually removed after it was pointed out to the bill’s backers, who had apparently not taken it upon themsevles to read what they were proposing.
In Oregon, a group of Democrats have proposed new regulations (SB 3200) that limits the number of “assault weapons” a person may own and requires registration of these arbitrarily defined firearms within 120 days of the law going into effect. What’s more, the legislation states in Section 5 that the Department of State Police “may conduct inspections of registered owners of assault weapons and large capacity magazines to ensure compliance with the storage requirements of Section 4.” Those “storage requirements,” however, aren’t made clear.
That’s pretty concerning. Gun owners in the Beaver State would be targets for warrantless searches, which are explicitly prohibited under the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution and Section 9 of the Oregon Constitution.
Even if these legislators manage to get this bill passed, the impact will be limited. According to a recently leaked memo from the Department of Justice explained that a ban on assault weapons is “unlikely to have an impact on gun violence.” Unfortunately, that hasn’t stopped these Oregon Democrats, who are needlessly pandering to their anti-gun base, from treating law-abiding citizens like criminals.