On Thursday, New York’s Democrat-controlled state legislature passed a bill that will raise the age limit to buy or possess a semi-automatic rifle from 18 to 21. The bill passed the state Senate along party lines in a 43-20 vote, and a 102-47 vote in the state assembly.
The bill not only raises the age limit but also requires anyone buying a semi-automatic rifle to obtain a license. National Review reports “current New York law only requires licensure for handguns. Federal law already requires people to be 21 to possess a handgun.”
While other types of rifles and shotguns would not be affected under the new measures, the gun reform package includes a bill to require guns to be equipped with microstamping technology, as well as legislation that would restrict the purchase of body armor and expand the list of people who can apply for an extreme risk protection order to prevent someone from purchasing or possessing a firearm if they are believed to be a danger to themselves or others.
New York City already requires permits to possess, carry and purchase any type of firearm and prohibits most applicants under 21, but outside of the city, “individuals as young as 16 can own long guns, including rifles and shotguns, without a license, the AP reported.”
National Review adds that similar measures which have passed state legislatures in California and Florida have faced legal challenges.
The Buffalo shooting suspect that killed ten people weeks ago at a grocery store passed a background check before legally buying a Bushmaster XM-15 semi-automatic rifle from a gun store in Endicott, N.Y.
He then illegally modified it to be able to hold a larger magazine, according to the New York Times. Democratic State Senator Gustavo Rivera dismissed concerns that the measure would infringe on Second Amendment rights saying, “It is meant to be a hassle to those folks who might want to get their hands quickly on something with which they could mass murder people,” according to the AP.