U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- We knew it was going to be bad, but not this bad! Yesterday, the Idaho Senate released their version of what was supposed to be a “good” Castle Doctrine and self-defense bill.
The entire purpose of reforming our self-defense laws is to ensure homeowners, and people in Idaho acting in self-defense, have the best protections possible.
Senate Bill 1161 fails to solidify Idaho as a top state where gun owners are protected! Instead, this bill would continue to protect criminals.
It is up to you to stop this poor piece of legislation from going forward. We’ll tell you how to help in just a minute.
The bill was introduced by Senator Bert Brackett (R-23) late last week and we already had an inkling that the bill was going to be a much weaker version of Rep. Christy Zito’s bill, R.S. 25277.
In fact, they aren't even close!
Isn’t it ironic that Senator Brackett is from the same District as Rep. Zito? Both are from District 23.
He never called or emailed her to discuss the issue. He never tried to collaborate with her. He simply stabbed her in the back and introduced his own bill.
The establishment always talks about “the process” and “decorum” in the legislature. Is it considered “good decorum” to not talk with other legislators if you are going to run a competing bill?
Is it part of “the process” to keep the public and other legislators in the dark about your backroom deals?
By having Senator Brackett introduce the bill, the establishment sent a loud and clear message to Rep. Zito and gun owners: “We control the gun bills and the people don’t have a voice here!”
Idaho's gun owners have been asking Rep. Zito to put forward the best self-defense bill possible and she did that with R.S. 25277.
Most of you probably remember that the bill Rep. Zito is sponsoring was written by Alexandria Kincaid. Alexandria is the top civil rights attorney in Idaho and a nationally known 2nd Amendment expert.
The bottom line is that Rep. Zito’s bill is far superior to the awful piece of legislation put out by Senator Brackett and the Secret Gun Committee.
So, what should a good Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground law look like?
- First, a real Castle Doctrine bill says that you are presumed innocent. When you fire your gun in self-defense, the law assumes you did so in fear of your life.
- Second, the law covers your home, vehicle, and place of business.
- Third, it gives the person firing in self-defense reimbursement for legal fees should they ever be taken to court and found not guilty.
- Fourth, the Stand Your Ground portion of the law must say that you have absolutely no “duty to retreat.”
Idaho's current Stand Your Ground law is based on case law. It says that you have no “duty to retreat” BUT a jury could determine that you could have fled and they can use that against you!
A real Stand Your Ground law says you don’t have to retreat. Period.
Senate Bill 1611 contains NONE of those protections listed above.
Rep. Zito’s bill, R.S. 25277 contains all of them!
Gun owners are asking for the best protections possible for themselves and for their families. Senate Bill 1611 does not deliver what gun owners want.
Once again, the Secret Gun Committee and the establishment leadership in Boise, have taken the desires of gun owners and watered down their requests to nothing.
The initial analysis from our legal team is that not only does this bill not offer the protections that gun owners need, but it may actually be detrimental to them.
Senate Bill 1611 really only makes one change to existing law. It says that someone breaking into your home is presumed to be committing a felony.
But what happens if you shoot an individual coming into your home and it turns out they were only committing a misdemeanor? YOU are on the hook at that moment because Idaho law says that you are only justified in defending your home if the perpetrator is committing a felony!
That is the reason we want the presumption of innocence to be with you, the victim. We can no longer have our laws favor the criminal.
You deserve the very best from your legislators and you aren’t getting it from the Secret Gun Committee.
So, what do you need to do right now?
Email the Senate State Affairs Committee members right away and tell them this bill can’t move forward in its current form!
You can simply copy all of these names into one email and say:
“Please stop Senate Bill 1161 from moving forward without amendment. I want better protection for Idaho’s gun owners as outlined in Rep. Zito's bill!”
Then, call your own Senator and tell him/her that they need to urge the State Affairs Committee to not let this bill go forward as it currently stands. You can reach your Senator by calling 208-332-1000.
Next, sign the petition immediately to show your support for real Castle Doctrine reform and then send it to your family and friends.
Finally, we are in an all out blitz right now to mobilize gun owners against this atrocious excuse for a “gun bill” and we need your help to fund these efforts.
Please consider a generous donation to help us do a massive social media blitz to stop SB 1161 from going forward as currently written by donating $100, $75 or even just $50 right away!
If that is just too much for you then please donate any amount you can, even if that is only $25 or $10 today!
Idahoans deserve the best pro-gun legislation in the country and our legislators are not delivering. Stand up now and tell them you won’t put up with these watered-down gun bills anymore.
P.S. Senate Bill 1161 is the Secret Gun Committee and Establishment version of “Castle Doctrine.” The only problem is that it fails in every aspect to protect gun owners as a Castle Doctrine bill should do.
There are only several weeks left in the legislative session and we need all hands on deck to help stop this bad piece of legislation.
Please call your Senator right away and tell them you want SB 1611 amended immediately to include protections for gun owners as contained in Rep. Zito’s Research Slip, 25277.
After you have done that, please email the Senate State Affairs Committee members listed in the email above and tell them the same thing.
While you are at it, sign the petition for real Castle Doctrine reform!