Democrats unveil bill to seize certain guns, ban assault weapons

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Democrats in Georgia's state House of Representatives riled many gun owners this week when they introduced a bill that bans assault weapons and high capacity magazines and also requires officials to seize "certain weaponry and ammunition."

The bill, HB 731, is sponsored by six Democrats, including State Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver, who explained her support for the bill in a statement on her website.

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"Georgia needs debate about these weapons which are only used for rapidly killing people," she wrote. "Assault weapons are not necessary for deer hunting."

The bill also outlines the punishment for anyone who does "possess, distribute, transport, transfer, or sell" an assault weapon:

"Any person who distributes, transports, or imports an assault weapon into this state shall be guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than two nor more than ten years."

Anyone who does possess an assault weapon or a large-capacity magazine would have until October 31, 2017 to either modify the weapon to "render it permanently inoperable or such that it is no longer an assault weapon or large capacity magazine" or give the firearm over to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to be destroyed, under the legislation.

Georgia Carry, a gun rights group in the state, tweeted their reaction to the legislation:

Republicans control both chambers of the state legislature in Georgia, so the Democrats will likely fail to pass the bill. You can read the text of HB 731 here.

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