This post has been updated.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has signed new gun control legislation, making New York the first state to tighten gun restrictions in the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings. The reforms are a significant boost for the potential 2016 presidential candidate.
“The responsible and comprehensive gun reform bills the Governor signed into law today will help keep guns away from criminals and others who are already prohibited from purchasing them," New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I) said in a statement. "The bi-partisan cooperation that produced these bills sets an example for Washington to follow."
The state's senate passed a measure Monday night, 43-18, that would make New York's gun laws the strictest in the country. The general assembly passed the legislation on Tuesday by a 104 to 43 vote.
The new law includes provisions that would:
- Change the definition of an assault weapon as one having two "military rifle features" to one.
- Ban Internet sales of assault weapons.
- Make private sales of assault weapons between anyone besides family members subject to outside background checks.
- Make it a misdemeanor to own a magazine of more than 7 bullets (the previous limit was 10). Persons owning higher ammunition magazines would have a year to sell them.
- Require therapists to report to the state mentally ill patients who they believe may use guns illegally. Authorities could confiscate those patients' weapons.
- Increase sentences for gun crimes.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said last week in his state of the state address that he would make gun control a priority, and wanted to move quickly to avoid a run on ammunition and assault weapons.
A Washington-Post ABC poll released Monday showed the majority of Americans support tightening gun control laws in the wake of the massacre in Newtown.