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Gun Rights Activists Rally At Washington Capitol

Several hundred gun rights activists rallied at Washington’s capitol Saturday to protest the new voter-approved law that requires background checks for person-to-person gun sales and transfers. Most participants in the "I Will Not Comply" rally were openly carrying handguns or rifles or both.

Organizer Gavin Seim rallied the crowd in chill and fog on the Capitol lawn.

“We stand here on this field exercising our First Amendment right to exercise our Second Amendment right,” Seim told the crowd.

A short distance away a makeshift booth where people were encouraged to hand guns back and forth in an act of defiance over the new background check law. Dave Grenier let people handle his handgun.

“You’re going to see massive non-compliance with this law because people find it objectionable,” Grenier said.

Backers of the new law say it’s not a violation to hand someone your gun.

The Washington State Patrol had prepared for a crowd of as many as 6,000, but estimated the actual turnout at under a thousand.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia." Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut. Austin’s reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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