South Carolina this month enacted a law to keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers, reports The Trace. The effort was shepherded by Republican state senators. Without the National Rifle Association’s participation in the bill-crafting process, the initiative, which was signed into law on June 4, likely would have stalled. The NRA's stance on such bills marks an apparent change in strategy for the group, which for years fought legislation mandating the surrender of firearms in domestic violence cases.
In December, when the South Carolina Legislature introduced a bill barring some domestic abusers from having guns for life, the NRA didn't oppose it, and its lobbyists instead proposed modifications. The group has adopted a similar approach over the last few years with bills that curtailed gun rights for domestic abusers in Louisiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Vermont, Oregon, and Washington state. “You can't come out and say you are for domestic violence,” says Dan Schoen, a state representative from Minnesota's Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party who successfully passed a lifetime gun ban for domestic abusers last year. “If it wasn't politically damaging to them, I am sure they wouldn't have been as conciliatory.”