Norment to ask for gun control to be stricken after majority whip resigns

Virginia Politics

FILE – In this Jan. 11, 2012, file photo, State Sen. Tommy Norment, R-James City County, looks over rules of the Senate during debate on the new Senate rules at the start of the 2012 session of the Virginia Senate at the Capitol in Richmond, Va. Norment is calling for a broad ban on guns in government buildings, a surprise legislation he filed the day before state lawmakers are set to debate gun laws. He filed a bill Monday, July 8, 2019, that would extend a state prohibition on guns in courthouses to any “building owned or used by a locality for governmental purposes.” (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP/WAVY) — Virginia’s top Republican says he will move to have a bill to ban guns in government controlled buildings to be stricken in committee.

Sen. Tommy Norment issued the statement Tuesday after Republican Sen. Bill Stanley told The Associated Press he would resign his role as majority whip of the GOP Senate caucus in protest of the bill.

News broke on Monday that Norment sponsored legislation to implement a broad ban on government buildings.

The legislation caught both Republicans and gun-control advocates off guard. His GOP colleagues immediately pushed back. They say it’s an infringement on the rights of law-abiding citizens to prevent them from carrying guns into government buildings.

Norment said Tuesday, “As currently drafted, the legislation represents neither my views nor my intention. I do not support – nor will I support – any measure that restricts the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens.”

Norment is married to a lobbyist for the city of Virginia Beach, where a municipal worker gunned down his co-workers in a mass shooting.

Lawmakers are convening in Richmond for special session which Gov. Ralph Northam called to address the issue of gun violence in Virginia.

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