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Va. lawmaker brandishes assault rifle

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) — In a visual display of show and tell, Delegate Joe Morrissey sounded off against assault weapons Thursday.

During a Thursday afternoon press conference, Morrissey displayed a number of weapons he wants banned in the Commonwealth.

“Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution did it say that someone can carry an AK-47 and walk down the middle of the street with it,” Morrissey said.

The delegate is introducing legislation that would ban the sale, transfer, import or barter ofJoe Morrissey assault rifles and magazines holding 20 or more rounds. Morrissey says his proposal would prohibit gun enthusiasts from buying or selling assault weapons at Gun Shows like one at the Show Place.

 “They may be angry and might not vote for me. That is ok. We’ve got to do something. Action is required,” he said. 

Pro-gun lobbyist Phillip Van Cleave says any ban on weapons infringes on American’s rights.

“What has put us at a disadvantage is that there are so many anti-gun bills versus pro-gun bills,” Van Cleave said. “They’ve seen this as an opportunity to take advantage of some dead children to push forward a political agenda.”

Delegate Morrissey’s says his legislation likely won’t pass the House, but says he will not be deterred.

“They don’t want to see this bill make it to the floor of the house to have legitimate debate,” Morrissey said. “The public needs to know that.”

Delegate Joe Morrissey’s ban would not apply to police officers and would not ban hand guns. The delegate says assault weapons do not belong on Virginia’s streets. He says the only place they should be found is a battlefield.

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