A tide of anger at gun-control efforts is sweeping through statehouses from South Carolina to North Dakota, taking the form of laws that would let states ignore or resist any new national gun restrictions, reports the New York Times. Legislators in at least 15 states have introduced bills that would ify any new efforts to further restrict access to guns or high-capacity magazines within their borders. Some have provocative language calling for states to arrest and prosecute federal agents who dare to enforce new firearms regulations.
Some have died quietly or been voted down amid concerns they are unconstitutional. Others are moving along with support from rural pro-gun Republicans, who say their constituents are threatened by Washington's push for stricter gun laws. “It's about citizens having the ability to be armed to protect themselves in their homes,” said Casey Guernsey, a Missouri state representative and hunter who holds an annual coyote shoot as a charity fund-raiser. His bill to block any new gun laws has 60 co-sponsors in the state's Republican-controlled House and is likely to come up for a hearing next week. “We aren't here to do the bidding of the federal government,” he said. “Whenever they go out of bounds, it's our responsibility to step up.”