PHOENIX – Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has earned praise and reignited controversy by once again expressing his support for Red Flag laws that proponents argue are common-sense measures to keep guns out of the hands of those who are mentally unfit, and that opponents consider to be nothing more than gun control. Ducey’s previous effort to pass such a law was blocked by the State Legislature in 2018.
According to Capitol Media Services, Ducey hopes to reintroduce the Red Flag law that creates STOPs (Severe Threat Order of Protection). “I’m disappointed we haven’t gotten more done on school safety,” Ducey told Capitol Media Services last week. “I definitely think more needs to be done.”
On Sunday, Ducey’s plan was praised by The Next Revolution host Steve Hilton. Hilton isn’t the only one who likes STOP. President Trump’s daughter Ivanka endorsed it on Sunday as well.
Congress should enact Red Flag laws/ Extreme Risk Protection Orders in EVERY state and increase resources dedicated to mental health support. https://t.co/YWgccND8dH
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) August 4, 2019
In March 2018, the Trump Administration called on every state to enact Extreme Risk Protection Orders. Trump also directed the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to states that sought help establishing and implementing Extreme Risk Protection Orders. The bills have enjoyed unique support from both sides of the usual debate, including from both the National Rifle Association and the Giffords Law Center.
Ducey described his STOP plan as the “crown jewel” of his safe schools plan.
Not everyone supports the idea however. Local 2nd Amendment rights groups oppose them as unnecessary and Breitbart.com printed a column that claimed Ducey’s “media and communications wing is using Never Trumper David French to justify the Governor’s current gun control push.”
In his January 2019 State-of-the-State speech, Ducey cited French and “local organizations like the Arizona School Boards Association, the Arizona Rural Schools Association, the Arizona Parent Teacher Association and Arizona School Administrators” as supporters of his plan. At the time, Ducey said that the issue was “simply too important an issue to let partisan politics and special interests get in the way.”
Conservatives fear that Ducey will exploit the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton this weekend to shame legislators into accepting his plan now, and that the support of the NRA and potentially the White House may result in passage over their sincere objections.
This weekend has shown us that homegrown terrorism is right in our backyard. We need to call this what it is—domestic terrorism driven by white nationalist ideology. There must be swift justice.
— Martha McSally (@SenMcSallyAZ) August 5, 2019