Democrat-controlled Nevada Legislature sends trio of gun control bills to Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo

Second Amendment


  • Nevada’s Democratic-controlled Legislature has advanced three gun control bills to GOP Gov. Joe Lombardo’s desk for his signature.
  • Lombardo, a Second Amendment supporter who also previously opposed other Republicans by advocating for universal background checks, has not commented on how he plans to respond to the Nevada gun control bills.
  • The Nevada bills come after a 2017 mass shooting incident where gunfire rained from a high-rise hotel and into a Las Vegas country music festival crowd that held 22,000 concertgoers.

Nevada’s Democrat-controlled Legislature passed a trio of gun control bills Monday, sending them to Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo’s desk, where they face questionable futures.

Lombardo’s office has not commented on the gun bills, nor on many other wide-ranging proposals that are running through the Legislature in the final stretch of its session.

One bill would raise the eligible age to possess semiautomatic shotguns and assault weapons from 18 to 21. Another would bar possession of a gun within 100 yards of an election site entrance with narrow exceptions, while also solidifying language meant to ban homemade “ghost guns.” A third bill would prohibit owning a firearm within a decade of a gross misdemeanor or felony hate crime conviction.

NEVADA GOP GOVERNOR’S SUPPORT FOR BILLS ADVANCING IN DEMOCRAT-CONTROLLED LEGISLATURE REMAINS UNCLEAR

Lombardo, the former Clark County sheriff, has previously bucked other Republicans by supporting universal background checks, but he still positions himself as firmly pro-Second Amendment while touting his NRA membership.

He previously vowed to veto any legislation curtailing ghost gun access while on the campaign trail, meaning the measure banning them has little chance for signature.

NV Gov. Joe Lombardo

Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo speaks on Feb. 13, 2023, in Phoenix, Arizona. A trio of Democratic-led gun control bills were sent to Lombardo’s desk Monday where they face questionable futures. (Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

All three bills were subject to contentious hearings filled with personal stories about the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting, a rise in mass shootings nationwide and allegations from Republican Legislators about unfair testimony and rushed committee votes.

Democratic Assembly Majority Leader Sandra Jauregui, who sponsored two of the bills, previously said the package would “protect second graders and the second amendment at the same time.” She noted that 21 is already the eligible age to own a handgun in Nevada.

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Jauregui was among the 22,000 concertgoers who in October 2017 fled 10 minutes of gunfire raining into a country music festival crowd from a high-rise hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. The attack killed 60 people and injured hundreds more.

The NRA, the Nevada Republican Party and several gun owners who testified in opposition have called the bills unconstitutional and discriminatory. Some said taking away guns, particularly in public areas where elections are held, could make those areas more dangerous, particularly with drop boxes in heavily-populated areas with other establishments.



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