By KELLY MOELLER
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is receiving flack from critics regarding the gun control measures that he vetoed last week.
According to an article in the Ridgewood Patch, the three measures were to require state enforcement agencies to report misplaced guns to federal databases, requirement of purchase permits to be logged on drivers licenses to assist in background checks and to require a gun safety training course, and a ban on the .50 caliber rifle.
Some say the Second Amendment is under fire. On paper you will see that right-wing conservatives are in favor of everybody’s “right to bear arms”, while left-wing liberals feel there need to be more restrictions on such a vague and broad piece of legislation.
Lilian D’Agostaro, a self described liberal-democrat and long time New Jersey Resident says, “New Jersey has the second strictest gun laws in the nation, reporting stuff to the feds, does that really make a difference if federal laws are weaker than state laws? It’s irresponsible of him to not sign the other two pieces into legislation, considering the influx in mass shootings across the country in the last 20 years,”
But unlike other social issues such as gay rights, abortion, and immigration, among others, the issue of gun control is one that has become more of a bi-partisan issue. People from all degrees of the spectrum are starting to meet in the middle of this very controversial issue with the exception of a few on the far right.
The only piece of legislation among these three that Governor Christie passed into law was the one requiring law enforcement to report lost or stolen firearms.
Regarding his signing the bill into law, Governor Christie stated,
“I’m glad the Legislature acted swiftly to incorporate my commonsense changes so that I can sign this bill and responsibly strengthen New Jersey’s already-tough gun laws,” said Governor Christie. “This new law will help state and federal law enforcement officials stop guns from getting into the hands of criminals, and help maintain public safety.” There were no comments about the other two ignored pieces of legislation.
The poll conducted by Rutgers-Eagleton shows that after Christie stood against two of the three bills the population’s support for them wavered, but still held the majority. But overall seven out of 10 residents are “very concerned” about gun violence. When asked if he thought these decisions would affect his upcoming bid for reelection, Sam Berman, a supporter of the Democratic side and senior at Rutgers University said,
“His brand is not a political brand or a policy brand, it’s an executive brand. He executes and people like that. Hell I like that. He gets things done, never mind how or what.”
According to NJ.com Christie’s defense for vetoing the legislation regarding a ban on .50 caliber rifles was regarding his own game: politics. He is in support of a ban on “future purchases” of the intense rifle but the written document he was given by the Democratic led Legislature was worded in a way in which it wouldn’t simply ban “future purchases”, which was Christie’s angle, but would also ban the rifle itself, causing current owners to surrender their weapon.