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Michigan Moms Demand Action, Everytown Criticize House Passage of Bill That Would Expose Michigan Cities and Town to Gun Lobby Lawsuits Over Local Public Safety Laws

LANSING, Mich. —The Michigan chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today criticized the Michigan House of Representatives’ passage of HB 4616, a bill that would expose Michigan cities and towns to lawsuits for attempting to enact or enforce local solutions to gun violence. If enacted, HB 4616 would make Michigan one of only a handful of states with punitive preemption laws that allow the gun lobby to take localities to court.

Existing Michigan law prevents cities, villages, townships and counties from creating local laws or rules that regulate gun ownership, registration, purchase, sale, transfer, transportation or possession. This law already prevents Michigan cities from adopting many local solutions to gun violence. HB 4616 would not solve a problem with the existing law; instead, it would simply allow powerful interests to enrich themselves further at the expense of Michigan taxpayers.

STATEMENT FROM EMILY DURBIN, VOLUNTEER CHAPTER LEADER FOR THE MICHIGAN CHAPTER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:

“Our lawmakers should focus on fixing actual problems, not on passing a bill that could force Michigan cities and towns to fight lawsuits backed by special interest groups. I hope our state senators will stand up for Michigan taxpayers by rejecting this giveaway to the gun lobby.”

More about punitive preemption bills:

When gun lobby-backed legislators in Pennsylvania passed a similar law in 2014, gun lobby groups from states as far away as Texas filed suit against Pennsylvania cities. The gun lobby group Second Amendment Foundation has initiated litigation campaigns against cities it claims have violated preemption laws like HB 4616 — suing or threatening to sue hundreds of cities in states from Maryland to Virginia to Oregon and Washington.