Burns votes to protect gun rights amid pandemic

Bill would remove restrictions on firearms during emergency declarations

HARRISBURG, June 25 – Wary of governmental overreach and already concerned at the current administration’s use of it’s emergency declaration, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, voted this week to protect gun owners’ rights and remove restrictions on firearms during emergency declarations.

“Emergency declaration or not, the fundamental constitutional rights of Americans shall not be infringed,” Burns said. “We’ve already seen how this governor has used his power to micromanage our lives – power that I voted against – and I’m concerned about what could happen in another emergency. I voted to check the power of the governor, and I’ll always stand up for our rights.”

Currently, Pennsylvania’s Crimes Code makes it illegal to possess an otherwise lawful firearm on the public streets or on any public property during an emergency declared by a state or municipal government, subject to certain exemptions.

The legislation Burns supported – H.B. 1737 – would repeal part of the Health and Safety Code that gives the governor the power to suspend or limit the sale of firearms and other items during a disaster emergency declaration. The bill has been sent to the Senate for further action.