New Jersey lawmakers spar over bills to restrict where concealed guns can be carried
Two New Jersey lawmakers had some choice words for one another while debating a bill regarding the concealed carrying of firearms.
Republican Assembly member Brian Bergen and Democratic Assembly member Joe Danielsen were among those lawmakers debating the bill in the state Assembly. Danielsen wrote the bill.
Danielsen was refusing to answer some of the questions Bergen asked, which prompted Bergen to call Danielsen an expletive under his breath.
“He didn't know his bill, he would not answer the questions that I asked him,” Bergen told News 12. “So yes, he was being a [expletive] yesterday.”
Bergen said his observation was not about Danielsen as a person, but the gun bill he wrote that passed the Assembly after the debate on Monday.
“So the bills should be drafted in such a way that are reasonable and fair to the public. This bill is not. This is an awful piece of legislation,” Bergen says.
The Supreme Court's Bruen decision this summer made it much easier for people to carry concealed guns legally. The bill Danielsen wrote requires training and insurance to carry a concealed weapon and sets up numerous gun-free zones such as bars, casinos, parks, nursery schools and homeless shelters.
“I wasn't there for the soundbites. I wasn't there for the clips. I was there to get on the record the facts the multiple facts that lead this to be an overly restrictive bill that flies in the face of Bruen,” Bergen says.
The Republican says he is preparing the ground for a potential lawsuit over the bill.
Danielsen says in a statement, “I’m proud of the bill Democrats passed yesterday to keep our families and communities safe from gun violence, and I believe Republicans were wrong to vote to allow guns to be brought into schools, daycare centers, hospitals and stadiums. But honestly they can call me anything they want – it will never stop me from fighting as hard as I can to keep our communities safer.”
The bill still must pass the state Senate before it goes to Gov. Murphy's desk.
The version of the Danielsen bill that passed the Assembly has been endorsed by all four of the state's police unions.