Roll Call! Senate Favors Restrictions on Firearms Ownership for Some Felons/Mentally Ill Citizens (20-8) 2015

Roll Call Graphic


in the State Senate on March 25, 2015 by a vote of

Purpose: From S.141: “The bill proposes to require personal service notification prior to sale of firearms relinquished pursuant to a relief from abuse order. The bill proposes to require the Court Administrator to report to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) established by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993 when a person is: (A) subject to a hospitalization order or nonhospitalization order after a  determination by a court that the person is a danger to himself or herself or others; or (B) found not responsible for a crime by reason of insanity or incompetent to stand trial due to a mental illness and is committed to the Department of Mental Health after a determination by a court that the person is a danger to himself or herself or others.”
Analysis: Those voting YES on the bill believe it will work to keep guns out of the hands of violent felons, thereby reducing violent crime.
Those voting NO believe the measures will not reduce crime or improve gun safety. They cite the fact that the legislation is redundant (federal legislation is already in place to police these situations), and unnecessary — a “solution in search of a problem” – as Vermont’s existing gun laws have earned Vermont the lowest violent crime rate per capita in the nation, according to the FBI.

Opponents of the bill echo the sentiments of Sen. Jon Rodgers (D-Essex/Orleans), quoted byVermont Public Radio, “He said the legislation in Vermont is part of a national gun-control movement that has targeted individual states. And he said incremental changes in this bill are designed to open up the door to more expansive legislation in the future.”

Senate Journal, Wednesday, March 25, 2015. “Thereupon, third reading of the bill was ordered on a roll call, Yeas 20, Nays 8.” (Read the Journal, p. 288-294)

Related Material: 
VIDEO: Sen. Joe Benning explains VT Gun Legislation and His Vote

How They Voted

(Click on Your Senator’s Name to Send an Email)


Timothy Ashe (D/P-Chittenden) – YES
Claire Ayer (D-Addison) – ABSENT
Becca Balint (D-Windham) – YES
Philip Baruth (D-Chittenden) – YES
Joseph Benning (R-Caledonia) -YES
Christopher Bray (D-Addison) -YES
John Campbell (D-Windsor) -YES
Brian Campion (D-Bennington) – YES
Brian Collamore (R-Rutland) – NO
Ann Cummings (D-Washington) -YES
Dustin Degree (R-Franklin) –  NO
William Doyle (R-Washington) – ABSENT
Margaret Flory (R-Rutland) – NO
M. Jane Kitchel (D-Caledonia) – YES
Virginia Lyons (D-Chittenden) – YES
Mark MacDonald (D-Orange) – YES
Richard Mazza (D-Chittenden-Grand Isle) – NO
Norman McAllister (R-Franklin) – NO
Richard McCormack (D-Windsor) – YES
Kevin Mullin (R-Rutland) – NO
Alice Nitka (D-Windsor District) – YES
Anthony Pollina (P/D/W-Washington) – YES
John Rodgers (D-Essex-Orleans) – NO
Richard Sears (D-Bennington) – YES
Michael Sirotkin (D-Chittenden) – YES
Diane Snelling (R-Chittenden) – YES
Robert Starr (D-Essex-Orleans) – NO
Richard Westman (R-Lamoille) – YES
Jeanette White (D-Windham) – YES
David Zuckerman (P-Chittenden) – YES

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Alex Knight March 26, 2015 at 8:23 pm

They will never rest until VT is exactly like NY: Merciless taxes, zero individual freedoms, everything you own or do under the bootheel of bureaucrats.

And then they’ll STILL push for more money and more control. They want a USSR that THEY’RE in charge of.


Lorri Bovey March 27, 2015 at 10:45 am

Very disappointed. Are they naive enough to believe that passing this law will stop and violent criminal or mentally ill person from getting a hold of a firearm? And I hope we have a good legal fund, when someone’s constitutional rights have been taken away because they are considered Mentally ill.


Joe Fortner March 27, 2015 at 2:48 pm

If my experience with Connecticut is any guide, rest assured that regardless of any promises that this bill is “all that we are looking to do,” that’s a lie (at least for those who push the legislation, often behind the scenes). The fact is that those looking to remove firearms from the citizenry are tireless and never satisfied. Regardless of its merits, the misguided post-Sandy Hook law passed in CT was not enough — we have already heard that the “commission” put together by the Governor is looking to recommend going even further. You can be confident that even if, in theory, some of the aspects of this VT bill are logical, its passage will be merely used to grease the skids for further enactments in the future. Once the legislators get in the habit of voting to restrict firearms ownership, they find it easy to keep going, increment at a time.

All for no good reason, given VT’s low crime rate.


Stewart Skrill April 2, 2015 at 2:40 pm

I do not choose to address the bill per se however what concerns me is that it will become necessary for a document to be completed prior to the acquisition of a gun in order to determine the mental stability of the buyer. There in lies the pathway to gun control, inasmuch as any person choosing to make a purchase of a gun will be required to disclose by form number, yet to be determined, more in formation than is necessary to prove their mental stability. This purchase agreement form will develop into the foundation of who owns what.
Thus we have a continuance of the destruction of liberty. Who would have thought?


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