Republicans argue proposed red flag gun bill violates constitutional rights

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WAUSAU, Wis (WSA) -- Governor Tony Evers is asking Republicans to tackle the issue of gun safety for the State of Wisconsin.

On Thursday morning, Democratic lawmakers along with the Governor introduced a red flag bill that would allow judges to seize guns from someone determined to be a threat.

"Every single Republican in the legislature needs to be asked on the record whether or not they support creating an Extreme Risk Protection Order process just as they should be asked whether or not they support universal background checks."

If the bill is approved, protection orders against someone could last up to a year or longer depending on the courts. Anyone in the community would be allowed to petition a judge and ask for one against someone they know who they feel might not be in the mental mindset to have one.

Currently, law enforcement is not allowed to confiscate someone’s gun unless a crime or incident has already happened, under this proposed law the process to do so would be streamlined. The Governor says this bill is not to prevent mass shootings but to save lives.

Several Republicans are not in favor of the idea. In a statement sent to NewsChannel 7 from State Senator Testin, he argues this bill goes against the constitution.

“Nobody should have their property or freedom taken away without having the chance to be heard. Instead, I will continue to support measures that preserve our safety and respect our rights, such as increasing access to mental health services or ensuring our schools have modern, reliable security."

At least 17 states have passed a similar bill and more than 20 others are considering it.