Parrott said it was disingenuous for Gov. O’Malley to “come forward
with a political agenda” in the face of a national tragedy, and said
that Maryland needs to have a concealed-carry law so that citizens can
defend themselves in the face of danger.
Shank also stressed the need for taking a look at the state’s public mental health system.
Serafini, Shank and Parrott voted against HB 618 last year, a bill that passed and led to the formation of a task force to study the access that those with mental health issues can have to firearms and if existing laws give enough protection to the public.
Sen. Young voted for the bill.
A report from that task force, Gov. O’Malley said this week, is due by the end of the year, according to a report.
Serafini said that he voted against the bill because of questions revolving around how “we define mental illness.”
“It was also the way this bill was presented,” Serafini said. “How do you respect the First and Second Amendment and still protect all the people?”
Shank said he agreed with the concept of the task force but had concerns that any possible law in the future concerning mental health and firearms could actually deter those needing treatment from seeking help.
“It [the task force] wasn’t being set up properly and I had questions about its composition,” Shank said.
Parrott said that task forces cost money and not a lot is achieved.
“We actually need to do something,” he said.