On Monday, Breitbart News editor-at-large Ben Shapiro reported on a Washington State bill that contained a little-noticed provision that would allow police to search a citizen’s home once a year if they owned particular guns.
The bill’s language read: “The sheriff of the county may, no more than once per year, conduct an inspection to ensure compliance with this subsection.”
Co-sponsors of the bill said the provision was merely an honest error. “I made a mistake,” said co-sponsor Sen. Adam Kline (D-Seattle). “I frankly should have vetted this more closely.”
But as the Washington State Sound Politics blog reports, this is hardly the first time Kline has sponsored legislation containing the warrantless police search phrasing.
In 2010, Kline co-sponsored an assault weapons bill that contained the identical phrase.
And in 2005, Sens. Kline and Jeanne Kohl-Welles sponsored a bill banning assault weapons that also contained the identical phrase allowing warrantless police searches of gun owner homes.
The revelation of the hidden, unconstitutional legislative language is causing a backlash even among self-described liberals like Seattle trial lawyer Lance Palmer.
“I’m a liberal Democrat–I’ve voted for only one Republican in my life,” said Palmer. “But now I understand why my right-wing opponents worry about having to fight a government takeover. It’s exactly this sort of thing that drives people into the arms of the NRA.”
Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat agrees. “I have been blasting the NRA for its paranoia in the gun-control debate. But Palmer is right–you can’t fully blame them, when cops going door-to-door shows up in legislation.”