Week 4 Recap
This week certainly contained some challenges! On Tuesday I presented Lauren’s Law (HB 190), my bill that emphasizes responsible gun ownership, to the House Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee. I was disappointed and surprised by the lack of questions and discussion, despite testimony both in favor and against the bill. As a legislature, we’re missing the opportunity to have a hard, but crucial, conversation. The bill was ultimately held by the committee, and I hope to work with my fellow legislators and stakeholders in reaching a compromise that moves the bill forward. Another difficult hurdle came on Thursday, when I presented HB 111, a bill that would work to hold repeat Domestic Violence offenders more accountable under the law, to the House of Representatives after a favorable recommendation from the House Judiciary Committee. Despite bipartisan support, the bill was voted down by the majority and will not go any further this session. I believe deeply in the importance of this legislation for providing safety and justice to survivors, and I plan on continuing to tackle this issue in my work to combat domestic violence in our communities.
On a positive note -- HB 184 Civil Air Patrol License Plate is coming along well, as we have worked to gather the necessary funds to support the creation of the new license plate. Now it's just a matter of getting back on the committee calendar! I also spoke with Lauren McCluskey's mother, Jill McCluskey, today about her views and goals for HB 190, Lauren's Law. Lauren's friends and family have been incredible advocates in her memory, and I am grateful for the opportunity to help honor her legacy through real, concrete change. Finally, my most recent bill, HB 400 Murder Mitigation Amendments, was released today to House Rules Committee. I am also proud to co-sponsor a number of exciting bills with representatives from both parties. You can see all of my legislation here.
While running for office I grappled with the fact that, as a Democrat in a legislature held overwhelmingly by Republicans, sometimes things would feel like an uphill battle, and issues were going to fall along partisan lines. What I believed then, and what I continue to believe, is that there are nonpartisan values and issues that need to be discussed and dealt with. The vast majority of issues we’ve faced as a legislature have been managed in a bipartisan and united fashion. I feel honored to work alongside my Republican and Democrat colleagues, and I look forward to the next three weeks.