Rep. Andrew Stoddard (D)


HB 68 (Mandatory Prison for Drug Distribution with a Firearm)

Libertas Institute opposes this bill.

This bill makes it a felony for a gun owner to be “an unlawful user of a controlled substance.” So, for example, if you’re using your spouse’s prescription drug without a prescription of your own, then your otherwise lawful gun ownership turns you into an immediate felon.

There’s no due process. You don’t first get charged with a drug crime, and only then are you on notice against having a gun. The very fact that you have a gun while also breaking a completely separate law brands you as a de facto felon.

Libertas Institute opposes this bill. This is a horribly punitive approach to the issue of illegal drugs. Countless Utahns own firearms for lawful self-defense while also choosing, for various reasons, to disobey the arcane and inhumane drug laws currently in place. These people should not be classified as felons outright, and they should not be mandatorily sent to prison.


Submit →