Why Act at the State Level?

What good does it do to have stricter gun laws in Vermont if other states or the federal government have different laws?

A:

Actually Vermont’s current gun laws are among the most lax in the nation (only Arizona’s gun laws are weaker than Vermont’s), so stricter gun laws are likely to more closely align us with other states and federal laws and will stop us from being a weak link in our region.

It is also the case that violations of federal gun laws within Vermont’s borders are not always prosecuted due to the lack of manpower at the federal level.  If Vermont had laws similar to those existing at the federal level, then Vermont law enforcement could arrest and prosecutors could prosecute on state charges, an option not open to them now.

Stricter gun laws in Vermont will also lead to less gun trafficking to neighboring states with stricter laws. Vermont is currently ranked 16th among all states as an exporter of guns for criminal purposes, and has the weakest laws in the northeast. When comparing how weak our laws are versus our neighbor New Hampshire, New Hampshire is ranked #26 out of the 50 states for weak guns laws, while Vermont is ranked #2 with some of the weakest laws in the nation. Vermont’s lack of common sense gun laws is a problem for our good neighbors to the north, south, east and west.


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