Test case? State's voters to decide on nation's strictest gun control

Oregon voters will decide this fall on a proposal that would require a permit for gun purchases and ban magazines higher than 10 rounds, except for current owners, law enforcement and the military.

Initiative 17, the Reduction of Gun Violence Act, has surpassed the minimum number of signatures required, 112,080, Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan’s elections division said Monday, Fox News reported.

If approved, an applicant for a gun permit would be required to complete an approved firearm safety course, pay a fee, provide personal information, submit to fingerprinting and photographing and pass a criminal background check.

The National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action condemned the initiative, saying on its website that “these anti-gun citizens are coming after YOU, the law-abiding firearm owners of Oregon, and YOUR guns.”

The Associated Press said Oregon apparently is the only state with a gun control initiative on the 2022 ballot Nov. 8.

A survey last month by the nonpartisan Oregon Values and Beliefs Center in Portland found that nearly 60% of Oregonians favored stricter federal gun regulations. And 56% said the same about the state’s regulations.

The chief petitioner of the initiative, Rev. Mark Knutson, is a Lutheran pastor in crime-plagued Portland.

He told the Associated Press he responded to news of the initiative’s placement on the ballot with a prayer “for those who’ve been affected by gun violence in this nation, especially Buffalo, Uvalde and Highland Park, recently.”

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