Civil rights and gun rights are on lawmakers’ minds today

It’s Day 8 of 60 of the 2020 session of the Washington Legislature in Olympia.

Civil rights and gun rights are on lawmakers’ minds today

2020 Washington Legislature, Day 8 of 60

Everett Herald political reporter Jerry Cornfield: jcornfield@heraldnet.com | @dospueblos

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OLYMPIA, Jan. 20, 2020 — Welcome to Week 2.

Today is going to be filled with many moments of heartfelt passion.

Prepare to feel something when the House convenes. This is the most ethnically diverse House in state history. This is a day when many will reflect on the influence of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on their personal journeys and civic lives. Rep. John Lovick of Mill Creek told Herald columnist Julie Muhlstein in 2013 how Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech was a turning point in his life.

And there will be passion this morning when lawmakers talk about AR-15 rifles and ammunition and limits on both. It is Gun Day Part I. A packed hearing room is expected when the Senate Law and Justice Committee tackles five gun-related bills — the most controversial to limit the capacity of magazines to 10 rounds of bullets. Gun Day Part II will play out Tuesday, when an assault-weapons ban plus high capacity magazine limit are considered in a House committee.

New this week: A group of Democratic senators wants to create an Office of Firearm Violence Prevention. It might make it out of committee this week.

New today: Want a 32-hour work week? These senators are proposing to give you one, with overtime starting at hour 33.

With teachers and school employees challenged to find an affordable place to live, this bill would let school districts build housing for them.

Republican Rep. Matt Shea received a hero’s welcome at last week’s gun rights rally. House Democrats need to decide soon if they will pursue or punt on trying to expel him.

Deadline alert: Only 18 days until the first cutoff. Any non-budget bill not passed by a committee by Feb. 7 is dead.


What we’re writing and reading

• My take: Lawmakers this week begin debate on a batch of proposed gun laws.

• Gubernatorial candidate and serial initiative promoter Tim Eyman says he’s bankrupt, but AG Bob Ferguson says the guy is not living like it, writes David Gutman of The Seattle Times.

Initiative activist Tim Eyman, who is also running as an independent for Washington governor, walks next to his car (which has expired registration tabs) before attending a rally on the first day of the 2020 session of the Legislature at the Capitol in Olympia. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

Initiative activist Tim Eyman, who is also running as an independent for Washington governor, walks next to his car (which has expired registration tabs) before attending a rally on the first day of the 2020 session of the Legislature at the Capitol in Olympia. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

• Every lawmaker attending last week’s State of the State address found a Cosmic Crisp apple at their seat. Jim Camden of the Spokane Spokesman-Review got to the core of the matter: Who brought them and will the expense have to be declared to the PDC?

• For months, a coalition of oil producers and energy providers has lobbied against Gov. Jay Inslee’s proposed clean fuel standards.They’ve even aired radio ads. Now BP is conducting its own high-octane fight against low carbon fuel standards, reports The Seattle Times.


What’s happening

Gun Day Part I.

Expanding access to early learning and child care takes center stage in an afternoon hearing of the Senate education committee.

It won’t end rock chips, but this bill aims to reduce the fanciful flight of debris by requiring all loads be covered. It’s up for a 3:30 p.m. hearing in House Transportation Committee.

Here’s the full Monday line-up.

Legislative agendas, schedules and calendars


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Beat reporters: Jerry Cornfield (Herald) | Rachel La Corte (AP) | Joseph O’Sullivan (Times) | Jim Brunner (Times) | Melissa Santos (Crosscut) | Jim Camden (Spokesman-Review) | Austin Jenkins (NW News Network) | James Drew (News Tribune)

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