In a mistake that probably wasn’t a mistake, a Washington state bill sponsored by liberal Democrats contained a little-noticed provision that would have called for the police to have the right to search private citizens’ home once per year if they own certain types of guns. According to Senate Bill 5737:
In order to continue to possess an assault weapon that was legally possessed on the effective date of this section, the person possessing shall … safely and securely store the assault weapon. The sheriff of the county may, no more than once per year, conduct an inspection to ensure compliance with this subsection.
In other words, kiss the Fourth Amendment goodbye. Liberal lawmakers behind the bill claim they have no knowledge of the provision – which, of course, begs the question as to how the provision got into the bill in the first place. “I have to admit it shouldn’t be in there,” said Sen. Ed Murray (D-Seattle). “I made a mistake,” said Sen. Adam Kline (D-Seattle). “I frankly should have vetted this more closely.”
This was likely no mistake. It’s hard to believe that a bill could advance this far without anyone reading it for such an obvious violation of Constitutional principles. But in an age of ever-bigger government and ever-smaller rights, anything is possible.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the book “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013). Follow him at Twitter @benshapiro.