Kasich, Legislators Clash over Gun Self-Defense Bill

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Kasich, Legislators Clash over Gun Self-Defense Bill

Gun control is once again proving to be a divisive issue between Ohio Governor John Kasich and his fellow Republicans in the legislature.

 

Lawmakers recently passed a bill that would change a key aspect of the state’s self-defense law. Under this legislation, a prosecutor in a case where a shooter is claiming self-defense would have the burden of proving that the shooter did not act in self-defense. Under current law, this burden is on the shooter.

 

Governor Kasich has said that he is not comfortable with this legislation, though he has not yet decided whether to sign the bill or veto it. The governor had also pushed for this measure to include a provision that would have allowed the government to seize the guns of people who are accused of being a danger to themselves or others. Other states have passed similar “red flag” bills, but Ohio legislators did not include such language in their bill.

 

While Gov. Kasich wanted a “red flag” provision but did not get it, legislators did follow his lead in opposing language that would have allowed someone to use deadly force in public to defend himself. Also known as a “stand your ground” law, many states have such measures, although they are controversial. Some legislators pushed for such a law in Ohio, but the governor’s opposition helped doom these efforts this year.

 

This self-defense legislation passed last week. Governor Kasich has 10 days to decide whether to sign it or veto the bill.

 

Do you think that Ohio should make it easier for people to use self-defense as a justification in shootings? Should the state adopt a “stand your ground” law that allows people to use deadly force if threatened in public?

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