Wednesday, March 22, 2023
March 22, 2023

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Washington gun initiative turns in petition signatures


OLYMPIA — Backers of a statewide gun initiative say they’ve gathered enough signatures to put the measure to voters in November.

Initiative 1639 would make several changes such raise the minimum age to buy semi-automatic rifles to 21 from 18 and require enhanced background checks. It would also require that gun owners secure firearms kept in their homes.

The campaign for I-1639 says it plans to turn in the final batch of more than 360,000 petition signatures collected to the secretary of state’s office in Olympia Friday, the deadline to get measures on fall ballot. They’ll need nearly 260,000 to be certified.

Last week Bellevue-based Second Amendment Foundation and other parties sued to invalidate the signatures, contending changes in law weren’t clearly marked on petitions. But a state Supreme Court Commissioner dismissed that filing Tuesday.