NEWS: Washington State – All Semiautomatic Rifles Are ‘Assault Rifles’

Washington State ballot initiative I-1639 categorizes all semiautomatic rifles as “assault rifles.”

Ballotpedia quotes I-1639’s text: noting that the initiative is focused on “semiautomatic assault rifles.”

Any rifle which utilizes a portion of the energy of a firing cartridge to extract the fired cartridge case and chamber the next round, and which requires a separate pull of the trigger to fire each cartridge. “Semiautomatic assault rifle” does not include antique firearms, any firearm that has been made permanently inoperable, or any firearm that is manually operated by bolt, pump, lever, or slide action.

In other words, semiautomatic rifles in general are the same as “semiautomatic assault rifles” in particular.

This means passage of the initiative would put in place enhanced background checks for the purchase of semiautomatic rifles, place a ten-day wait on completion of a semiautomatic rifle sale, and require purchasers to pass a gun safety course.

Additionally, I-1639 would institute gun storage requirements for all firearms, be they semiautomatic, pump action, bolt action, or single shot. The storage requirements portend felony charges for gun owners whose guns are stolen and used in a crime or accessed by unauthorized people and used for mischief.

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