|“I’m in a place I’ve never been before in my career. I don’t think. I’m in a spot of disagreement with the Citizens Defense League,” Chairman Trump stated as he relinquished the Chair of Senate Judiciary so he could speak to the strike & insert amendment to HB2694, creating the “Second Amendment Preservation Act.”
He discussed how difficult it is to write “anticipatory” legislation for events that haven’t happened yet, since the bill as written is intended to prevent potential federal taking of various types of firearms. He described the original bill as a non-starter for him.
“The idea that we would threaten the very men & women who risk their lives every day for doing their jobs was not something that I could ever have supported at any level,” said Trump, on the provision that law enforcement could be arrested for aiding federal officers. As the bill came to Senate Judiciary, Chairman Trump noted that the most onerous and obnoxious parts of the bill are gone. “The cooperation between local and federal law enforcement has been beneficial to this state,” Trump said. He read part of the legislative findings directly from the bill:
(d) This trust is threatened when state and local agencies are entangled with federal law enforcement, with the result that firearm owners and community members fear approaching police when they are victims of and/or witnesses to crimes, seeking basic health services, or attending school, to the detriment of public safety and the well-being of all West Virginians, and;
(e) Entangling state and local agencies with federal law enforcement programs diverts already limited resources and blurs the lines of accountability between local, state, and federal governments, and;
“I have to disagree with that. This is not limited to firearms. This isn’t going to work and it’s going to end in disaster,” said Trump with regard to the legislative findings. Trump went on to read through his committee’s strike & insert amendment. The title is changed to the WV 2nd Amendment Preservation & Anti-Federal Commandeering Act.” Chairman Trump went through the findings nearly line by line, completely rewritten from the bill as it came from the House. In closing after a very lengthy and unusual presentation by the Chairman, he said, “The strike & insert is a true federal anti-commandeering law. The House bill is a complete anti-cooperation law.” The strike & insert amendment for HB2694 passed.