A Democratic state senator in California who was arrested by federal agents for illegal gun trafficking was a self-described gun safety advocate who sponsored and support gun control legislation.
State Sen. Leland Yee of San Francisco was arrested in a federal corruption investigation on Wednesday. Authorities said Yee was involved in a conspiracy to deal firearms without a license and illegally import firearms in exchange for campaign contributions.
Yee introduced legislation to prohibit the use of a device known as the “bullet button,” which allows magazines of semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15 to be removed and replaced quickly, and legislation to require that all firearms have a trigger lock or are secured in a gun safe when the owner is not home.
The lawmaker also supported the California Assault Weapon Ban and similar legislation to ban assault weapons at the federal level.
“We must reinstate the federal assault weapon ban and close the bullet button loophole that has severely weakened California’s assault weapon ban. In addition, I am examining several other changes, including increased background checks, mental health evaluations, limits on ammunition, and additional safe storage requirements,” Yee said in December 2012, following the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.
“While this issue is complex and we probably cannot stop all acts of gun violence, surely we can and we must provide our children and families with reasonable gun safety laws. While these responses may not always be the most politically expedient, we must put politics aside to avoid future mass casualties, especially of children.”
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