With both of New York’s state legislative bodies now controlled by Democrats, gun control measures that were blocked by Republicans each year have a fighting chance this year, reports the Albany Times-Union. The issue kicks off today, when the Assembly – as it has done for several years – is expected to pass several measures that would tighten restrictions on gun ownership.
With a 68-seat margin in the Assembly (109 to 41), Democrats should have no problem passing initiatives to “microstamp” firearms in order to create an identifying print on fired cartridges. Also up for debate are tighter restrictions on gun retailers and a move to require people to renew handgun permits every five years. Once those bills pass in the Assembly, gun control advocates will set their sights on the Senate and the Democrats’ newly minted two-seat majority (32 to 30). The issue may put some Republicans on the spot in light of the April 3 tragedy in Binghamton, where a suicidal man used a legally licensed handgun to kill 14 people.