I wanted to make sure you saw the news that Lincoln’s City Council has unanimously passed a city ordinance banning the possession and sale of bump stocks and other “multiburst trigger activator” devices. Two Republicans and four Democrats voted for the ordinance on Monday night.
Machine guns have been tightly regulated under federal law since the 1930s, but bump stocks and other conversion devices are designed to skirt the law and mimic automatic gunfire, and can increase the lethality of shootings. Guns equipped with bump stocks were used in the largest and deadliest mass shooting in modern American history last year in Las Vegas, in which 58 people were shot and killed and hundreds more wounded.
Lincoln’s new ordinance is an example of the type of local public safety law that could be invalidated if Nebraska enacts LB 68, a bill that would strip cities and villages of the ability to enact and enforce laws relating to the ownership, possession, carrying, transfer, or storage of firearms.
In addition to preventing local governments from enacting or enforcing public safety laws involving firearms, LB 68 would make Nebraska one of only a handful of states with punitive preemption laws that give gun lobby organizations — including those based out-of-state — the right to sue local governments for taking steps to protect public safety. The gun lobby group Second Amendment Foundation has initiated litigation campaigns against cities it claims have violated preemption laws like LB 68 — suing or threatening to sue hundreds of cities in states from Maryland to Virginia to Oregon and Washington.
If you have any questions about bump stocks, LB 68 or punitive preemption laws, please don’t hesitate to reach out.