Gov. Phil Murphy vowed Tuesday to roll back Christie-era efforts to weaken concealed carry regulations while also tightening other state gun laws, including a plan that would limit the permitted size of gun magazines.
“Together, we can pass the laws that Governor Christie vetoed and reclaim our place as a state that acts on facts and common sense. We must again become a state that values the safety of our residents and communities over the misguided priorities of the gun lobby,” Murphy said during a round table event in Cherry Hill with gun activists and Assembly Majority Leader Louis Greenwald.
In 2014, Christie vetoed a bill limiting magazine capacity and refused to meet with parents of children slain at Sandy Hook Elementry School who supported the measure.
The parents contended the slaughter of 20 children and six adults might have been reduced if the gunman had been required to stop to reload his asault rifle. Christie, who was seeking the Republican nomination for president at the time, said reducing permitted magazine size from 15 to 10 made no sense to him and would not have saved lives.
At the time, Greenwald called Christie’s veto a “cowardly decision that lacks leadership.”
Greenwald has introduced several pieces of gun control legislation in this session that Murphy has expressed support for. In addition to reducing magazine size, they would make it more difficult for people to receive concealed carry permits by writing into law regulations defining justifiable need to receive a handgun permit, require background checks for private gun sales, prohibit the possession of body armor-piercing bullets and banning certain 50-caliber weapons.
Christie, in 2013, had vetoed an earlier bill banning the large-caliber military-style weapons, saying the legislature presented no evidence that such guns had ever been used by a criminal in the state.
New Jersey already has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation.
Greenwald touted his efforts supporting gun control measures and said he was happy Murphy would be “working hand-in-hand with the legislature as we work to end gun violence and ensure New Jersey is a safe place.”