Editor's Note, July 25, 2012: This 2004 press release has gotten frequent hits over the years. We noted that some of the characters, mostly quotation marks, were failing to display properly so we have cleaned them up and restored the paragraph breaks.
Governor Mitt Romney has signed into law a permanent assault weapons ban that he says will make it harder for criminals to get their hands on these guns.
"Deadly assault weapons have no place in Massachusetts,"Ě Romney said, at a bill signing ceremony on July 1 with legislators, sportsmen's groups and gun safety advocates. "These guns are not made for recreation or self-defense. They are instruments of destruction with the sole purpose of hunting down and killing people."
Like the federal assault weapons ban, the state ban, put in place in 1998, was scheduled to expire in September. The new law ensures these deadly weapons, including AK-47s, UZIs and Mac-10 rifles, are permanently prohibited in Massachusetts no matter what happens on the federal level.
"We are pleased to mark an important victory in the fight against crime,"Ě said Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey. "The most important job of state government is ensuring public safety. Governor Romney and I are determined to do whatever it takes to stop the flood of dangerous weapons into our cities and towns and to make Massachusetts safer for law-abiding citizens."
The new law also makes a number of improvements to the current gun licensing system, including:
• Extending the term of a firearm identification card and a license to carry firearms from four years to six years;
• Granting a 90-day grace period for holders of firearm identification cards and licenses to carry who have applied for renewal; and
• Creating a seven-member Firearm License Review Board to review firearm license applications that have been denied.
"This is truly a great day for Massachusetts' sportsmen and women,"Ě said Senator Stephen M. Brewer. "These reforms correct some serious mistakes that were made during the gun debate in 1998, when many of our state's gun owners were stripped of their long-standing rights to own firearms. I applaud Senate President Travaglini for allowing the Senate to undertake this necessary legislation."
"I want to congratulate everyone that has worked so hard on this issue," said Representative George Peterson. "Because of their dedication, we are here today to sign into law this consensus piece of legislation. This change will go a long way toward fixing the flaws created by the 1998 law. Another key piece to this legislation addresses those citizens who have applied for renewals. If the government does not process their renewal in a timely fashion, those citizens won't be put at risk because of the 90 day grace period that is being adopted today."Ě
"Never before has there been such bi-partisan cooperation in the passage of gun safety legislation of this magnitude in this nation," said John Rosenthal, co-founder and chair of Stop Handgun Violence. "I applaud the leadership of the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker and entire Legislature for passage of this assault weapons ban renewal. They have shown that Massachusetts can continue to lead the nation in protecting the public and law enforcement from military style assault weapons."
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I think it's deplorable that he has taken the right to own a weapon of a persons chosing away from them. Bombs and "ied" weapons have killed far more people. I had liked Mr. Romney a little until I heard that. It is nothing but politcal manuvering to make Americans defenseless. For SHAME!!
"these guns were made for killing" any item known to man can kill. the AR-15 is a good home defense weapon because of its accuracy, and penetration. Why not just rewrite the constitution and take away all our rights. This man is a shame to the USA
What hypocrisy and elitism, considering that he has bodyguards with military-style weapons to protect him and his family! He obviously thinks that the rest of US who cannot afford body guards, do not deserve to protect ourselves with the best weaponry we can afford.
I was refered to this link from the ARF forum.
I see a few things about Mr Romney that disturb me..Most importantly this position on gun ownership,this is only the sign of where his politics lye and other gun bans will follow only opening the door for more crime & distruction of America..
I can't believe that some gun owners in this country would even consider a vote for Romney when his stance on so called "assault weapons" is written out very clearly. Any infringment on the Constitution needs to be dealt with, and electing a gun grabber to hold the office of President is NOT a step in the right direction. Best of all, I would NEVER support any candidate, let alone the former governor of the People's Republic of Massachussetts. Blech..
All the idiots that read this and say that Mitt wants to take away our guns, are very uneducated. This is what democracy is about. Most of Mass. voted to have this assault weapons ban, and when that consensus was reached the legislature acted on it. Mitt Romney IS NOT for a federal ban on any type of gun. This should be left up to the states. Romney was the governor of a state that wanted the ban, so they passed it. Again, our leaders may have personal preferences or feelings on something, but a true leader doesn't let that get in the way, especially in a democracy where our leaders are supposed to have our voice. Mitt WILL NOT take away our guns, and IS NOT for a federal ban. To not vote for Mitt because of this is irresponsible and shows that you have no idea how democracy and states rights work. Mitt Romney is what this country needs!! Romney/Hunter 08
Josh. In this case, the issue has nothing to do with which side had more votes, it has to do with what was voted on: a constitutional right to bear arms (no infringment if I recall).
Would you support a ban on free speech in my state if the majority of voters approved?
The bill of rights in the constitution was placed there so that even a majority could not take away certian rights.
The place to stop gun ownership is a constitutional ammendment, not local laws. Do it right, or some majority may tell you it is time to become an atheist.
To Josh, we are first and foremost a republic not a democracy!
A little education in what the Amendments in the Bill of Rights are for.
If 51% of the people voted that Read heads where considered to be evil and needs to be kicked out of the US then that would not justify it or make it legal!
The right to keep and bear arms under 2 Amendment guaranties just that, like the first Amendment guarantees the right of free speech. No state can abolish the Right recognized under our constitution whit a majority vote!
Another rule, another law, another ban. Just what we've come to expect from our lawmakers. Why work on the problem of violent people, when we can just look like we're doing something by taking those scary looking guns away from law abiding citizens. Semi-automatic rifles and pistols have been around a long time. Plenty of guns not banned are semi-automatic. So what makes an "assault weapon". A pistol grip?, A folding stock? A plastic shroud on the barrel? Who really thinks any of that cosmetic stuff has any real impact on crime. No, I speculate that people who don't know guns or who have never enjoyed the sport and art of precision shooting see any military styled gun with only fear and apprehension. Too many Rambo movies I think. Semi-automatic is not Automatic. Just because it is black and has a ribbed shroud doesn't make it anymore dangerous then your grandpa's hunting rifle. Look at the crime statistics. Who's robbing liquor stores and gas stations with a $1500.00 AR-15? Based on stats for most states less than 2% of gun crimes involve a so-called assault weapon. No this law-making via misunderstanding, mistrust, and fear.
There is a larger and larger chasm between the worlds of rural America and big city. As politicians embrace the city and it's influential majority, how disconcerting that distant gun shot. Perhaps another drive-by, or the echo of British tyranny, the battle of Lexington, and the peoples fight for arms that made this... America.
‚ÄúThese guns are not made for recreation or self-defense. They are instruments of destruction with the sole purpose of hunting down and killing people.‚ÄĚ
The Constitution aside, the above statement, alone, shows his complete ignorance of the firearms included in the ban. Many of those weapons are used extensively for recreational purposes and organized competitions.
Another way to keep us down huh? If you look at the statistics assault weapons are a tiny percentage of the violent crimes. If this country thinks that by taking away these firearms from the law abiding citizens, this counrty will be better they are very wrong. Its just another means of control. Our country is starting to remind me of hitler, and stalin, and all those other "great leaders". Take away there guns so they cant fight back.
If, as the former governor Romney said, "‚ÄúDeadly assault weapons have no place in Massachusetts,‚ÄĚ then they should be taken away from police and other public safety institutions. But since they have erroneously labeled as the weapons of choice of criminals (actually concealable handguns are), the irony continues.
The silliest thing about this is that it is purely feel good legislation to placate the paranoid people of the Republic of Massachusetts. It is misleading. I own five,yes five of the so called "assault weapons". This only bans new imports into the state,not the thousands already here. We can also still obtain and own preban hi capacity magazines too with a Class A LTC. This state is safe not because of an assault weapon ban but because they are almost never used in crimes.
Guess that's why he's no longer in office. Vote them out is step 1... Now... where in the HELL is the UNDO button? UNDO the garbage these idoiots put into place to restrict your rights, your freedom and your ability to defend yourself against (oh that's right... our government). Can anyone say Marshal Law? Go read about FEMA, and New World Order - Kissinger just got through urging Obama to continue moving in this direction. Go read about the guillatines ordered from China, and the boxcars with shackles Bush contrated out. Why do we need enough boxcars to transport 15 million people? FEMA concentration camps! VOTE THEM OUT AND UNDO THEIR DAMAGE IF YOU WANT TO REMAIN A FREE CITIZEN. EDUCATE YOURSELF PEOPLE!
Obama recently said...
"From South Central L.A. to Newark, New Jersey, there's an epidemic of violence that's sickening the soul of this nation," the Illinois senator told the crowd. "The violence is unacceptable and it's got to stop." Nearly three dozen Chicago students have been killed this year, according to Chicago Public Schools. Obama said that figure is higher than the number of Illinois serviceman who've died in Iraq in 2007. (not)Really funny how the honest people in LA and New jersey have access to the weakest firearms legally and the criminals there have RPGs and grenades.. atleast here in LA. so i guess he wants to spread the sickness and since so many students are dying in chicago then what good did the handgun ban do for the city.. well not much and He later added, "There's a reason they go out and shoot each other, because they don't love themselves. And the reason they don't love themselves is because we are not loving them enough." Thanks buddy anymore love in LA and I might as well drive to the ghetto and empty my pockets.. its bad enough you have all these gangs robbing and killing, I cant have a real rifle to protect my house and soon you want my pistol too, then when every house has a sign posted unarmed and helpless.. lets hope the cops can deal with all the crime that will take place.. then the only solution is we all quit our jobs and become cops too..crazy but true in that situation. which begs the same question if I am honest enough to become police and protect others why cant I just be me and protect my own.
Well I would suggest we pass a gun ban on the military world wide...just pick up the newspaper , turn on the news and see what are doing with Their guns...They are killing millions of people every day, You want peace? take away the guns from the WAR MONGERS and we would see a much more peaceful world. You never see an avid hunter or sport shooting group killing people by the millions now do you?
So you are saying that by giving up guns, the world would become a better place? I would like you to read what happened to Australia. they have the same type of ban in effect. the crime rate actually went up because criminals knew that honest citizens were unarmed and unable to defend themselves( they either got their guns on the black market or were stolen). Come on and wake up, who has heard of a criminal who legally buys a gun and commits a crime with it? also, would an assault weapon make any one any deader? (It's like saying cars make drunks kill people, we should put a ban on cars also). They get it by illegal means and if you read in the papers, the firearms are untraceable because the serial numbers are removed. Also during WW II, the japanese would not invade the U.S. because they knew the us citizens were armed. If the citizens give up their guns, the U.S. will be vulnerable to an invasion.
People like you who want to ban assault type guns are dumb. It is my constitutional right and a personal choice to own a LEGAL AK-47. I don't tell you what car you can drive. If someone steals your car and hits someone who's fault is it ? The car? The owner ? No, its the person who comitted the crime! The same for guns (Any Type) The gun didn't jump out of the car and stick up a 7-11. nope the person holding the gun did.
Perhaps you should never drive your car. It is proven that untrained drivers kill thousands people every day. You could murder me. So I think there should be a bill to stop your driving. Only police and militairy should drive. Besides you can just walk.
Cell phones have radiation,,,,,there are supposed to cause cancer. We can't have that. Pass a bill to stop that also.
Airplanes kill . There should be a bill to ban flight. walking will be safer. Don't forget sticks and stones, they can hurt too. An another bill to prohibit that is needed.
Go ahead and ban those B A D guns. Criminals can get rocket launchers, pistols, assault rifles and flame throwers if they want them. Right on the street. Where you ask. Ill give you one place. Mexico, they can,,, and do supply our street gangs , punks, thugs, and your children.. not to mention that all those unchecked cargo containers arriving from around the world every day that have a nice supply of guns in them. 18 wheelers that cross the border unchecked.( they haul the cargo containers)
Come on,,, look around you. Legal people are not the problem. Never have been.
You just make a statement without any thought or consiquince of your action. Our right to keep and bear arms is a right paid for with our fathers and forefathers blood. If you do what you seek then you shame there sacrifice that was fought for so dearly. Ever think that there might be a reason we have not been invaded. "private gun ownership"
You want to control law abiding people. Move to Russia and let the flag and the people be free.
Removing guns from legal people who pay taxes and follow the law to the letter is just stupid. I NEVER shoot my assault rifles, I collect them. It's a hobby. not a crime. Taking my rights away is a crime, a constitutional invasion of my rights. YES it's personal. Your complaining is bothering me and there should be a bill passed to prevent you from stressing me out. and making me a criminal.
You need to look in to ENFORCING current gun laws. Yea those laws that are VERY tough but not enforced.
Use your head for somthing besides a hat rack!
Right on Anti-Gun people are stupid i have a 3 "Assult Rifles" and i never hurt anybody, but all they do is bunch us gun owners up good and the bad, i live in michigan and we have no restrictions. no mag cap restrictions nothin like that, and we have less crime then MOST places soooo that leaves me to belive that gun control dose nothing
DRUGS LIKE HEROIN COKE CAIN ECT. ARE 110% ILLEGAL IN THE USA YET THEY FLOOD OUR STREETS EVERY DAY. THEY FIND THERE WAY INTO THE HANDS OF PEOPLE WHO SHOULD NOT HAVE THEM. THIS IS THE SAME THING THAT WILL HAPPEN WITH GUNS IF YOU (TRY) TO TAKE THEM AWAY. PEOLE WHO WANT GUNS FOR THE WRONGE REASONS WILL GET THEM NO MATTER THE LAW YET LAW ABIDING CITECENS WILL BE HELPLESS (BECAUSE THEY FOLLOW THE LAW) THANKS TO YOU
PS I WILL ADD TAKE AWAY FAST CARS THAT GO OVER ANY STATES SPEED LIMIT THEY ARE NOT NEEDED AND ANY TRICKED OUT ACCECORIES THAT EVEN MAKE THEM LOOK FAST. ANY CAR CAN BE DEADY NO MATTER HOW FAST THEY GO (THIS IS JUST A COMPARISON DONT TAKES CARS AWAY TOO PLEASE)
I have been a gun owner since I was a child and currently own many hunting rifles and have previously owned a few assault weapons. Yet I now realize assault weapons pose a legitimate threat.
Equating assault weapons to cars is not at all valid as a more rational equation would be to grenades. What do hunt you with an AK-47, nothing and I have killed a lot of game, and would never consider it.
This having a gun to defend you is not valid.It is ok for hunters but there is a big difference between a target and something living. I went hunting with someone who could hit targets all day with precision. Took him hunting and he missed like he had never handled a gun before. Many people believe the threat of a gun will deter a person intent on harming you, but many times it just raises the stakes. And if you are not up to using it the attacker will on you and possibly others.
Now they do have to get a gun pro to write the law so semi-automatic hunting weapons and pistols are excluded and shown to be clearly different than true assault weapons.
To compare smuggling drugs to guns again a not a valid comparison.Seen anyone swallow a bunch of guns lately? Size and weight do count $50,000 worth of heroin can be in your stomach ,car tire virtually anywhere as most drugs in pure form require little space for massive value. The equivalent value in guns would require a fleet of diesel trucks.
These laws must be written not only with gun owners rights in mind but public safety also.
We must allay fears and do the responsible thing. This thing of my rights being harmed has to be looked at. The I don't care how many people suffer or die as long as I get what I want has to be analyzed as we have become a country of Me,Me,Me, and you need look no further than Wall Street to see it.
Anyone who looks at assault weapons and sees anything other than a tool of war should look again.
I have two assault rifles - an ak47 and an AR-15. Love em both and they are a ton of fun to shoot. Neither are more deadly than my 12 guage shotgun. This is stupid legislation and a huge diversion of energy needed to go after criminals with guns.
AND THAT IS WHY I WILL NEVER VOTE FOR YOU ROMMY, I WOULD COME CLOSER TO A VOTE FOR HITLER, AT LEAST HIS INTENTIONS WERE HONEST, THOUGH EVIL, I CAN SAY OF YOUR VOTE THAT IT REFLECTS YOU ARE A SNAKE, OR A BLITHERING IDIOT...REAL REPUBLICAN FOREVER
The only people that will abide by the rules and restrictions of any gun ban are law abiding citizens. The ban will change nothing for the criminals, considering there getting there weapons illegally anyways. We would have to agree that most criminals use handguns and other weapons other than assault weapons.
This law would make it impossible for people without a criminal record to buy an assault rifle because they were mad or had a nervous break down, and go nuts at work. It does some good and does keep some guns out of the hands of people who have yet to commit a crime, but you are correct in that the majority of the people that this law affects are those who have no intention of harming anybody with them.
This tops it all doesn't it? I mean ban the evil guns that kill people, mmm let see here when was the last time a gun was put to death by lethal injection, electric chair, gas chamber.... oh yeah NEVER! Why? Because the gun WAS NOT ACCUSED AND CONVICTED of the crime. The person who wielded the gun was convicted not the gun. All these politicians that ban guns and thump there chests, proclaiming they are protecting us are protected by whom? Yeah people with guns. When they can walk down parts of New York, Detroit, Los Angeles, Memphis or Atlanta WITHOUT their bodyguards. Then they will have made cities safe until then I'll keep my guns. By the way WHO protects the President, the Attorney General and all the politicians? People with BIG guns and FULLY AUTOMATIC RIFLES. They have nothing to worry about, they get Secret Service Protection for life. Even at the local level, when something goes wrong, you don't call the librarian, the grocer, the sparkletts guy or the UPS guy. You call the one with the equalizer... the cop with a what... YES A GUN. And why? Because the gun is respected.
A gun is a gun and Just the other day there was a shooting that killed 3 and injured 4 and the killer used a springfield 45 which is not considered an assult weapon. so are we gonna ban all guns now? Everything that is illeagel is still accessed by banning so called assult weapons are just gonna bring up the crime and make the bad guys more rich and powerfull. And we wont be able to do nothing about it if we cant defend ourselves.