Gun rights rally amid ‘red flag’ law debate

  • Emily Previti

From The Context, PA Post’s weekday email newsletter:

Pennsylvania is one of 14 states with primaries closed to voters unaffiliated with a political party. This story from Marc Levy of the Associated Press looks at the chances of that changing and includes some facts that surprised me, including the finding that opening up primaries in other states hasn’t increased turnout. -Emily Previti, Newsletter Producer/Reporter

Crowd expected at annual event

Supporters of gun rights crowd the Capitol rotunda in Harrisburg, Pa., in 2017.

Marc Levy / Associated Press

Supporters of gun rights crowd the Capitol rotunda in Harrisburg, Pa., in 2017.

  • Hundreds of demonstrators are expected to pack the statehouse rotunda today for the Pennsylvania Right to Keep and Bear Arms rally, an annual event at the Capitol complex.

  • Lawmakers also are debating a bill that would make it easier to take away guns from people believed to be a danger to themselves or others. Last session, the measure didn’t pass in Pennsylvania (for background, check out this analysis from PA Post’s Ed Mahon) — although the list of states with “red flag” laws continues to grow, as outlined here by USA Today.

  • The event comes amid the rollout of stricter rules for firearms possession by defendants in domestic abuse cases.

Best of the rest

Republican Fred Keller and Democrat Marc Friedenberg meet for a coin toss ahead of the May 2, 2019, debate for the Pennsylvania 12th congressional district.

Ed Mahon / PA Post

Republican Fred Keller and Democrat Marc Friedenberg meet for a coin toss ahead of the May 2, 2019, debate for the Pennsylvania 12th congressional district.

  • Voters in Pennsylvania’s sprawling 12th congressional district are a few weeks away from the special election to fill the vacancy left by former Rep. Tom Marino’s abrupt departure days into the current legislative session. Candidates Fred Keller, a Republican state rep,  and Marc Friedenberg, a cybersecurity professor running as a Democrat, sparred during their sole televised debate last week. If you didn’t catch it, PA Post’s Ed Mahon has the highlights here.

  • Pa.’s fastest-shrinking metropolitan statistical areas are west of the 12th, according to this 24/7 Wall Street ranking: Altoona and Johnstown, plus the Youngstown, Ohio, metro that includes Mercer County, Pa. Only Michigan and New York have more MSA’s (three each) than Pennsylvania among the 25 fastest-shrinking in the United States.

  • Pennsylvania is among the dozen or so states where defendants are getting text message reminders of their court dates. The Associated Press has the full story.


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