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Utah State Legislative Candidate Questionnaire 2002

Utah Gun Owners' Alliance
P.O. Box 1185 Sandy, UT 84091-1185
Working to protect the individual right of the people to keep and bear arms
for security and defense of self, family, others, property, or the state,
as well as for other lawful purposes ...

Results of this survey are posted on the UTGOA web site, If you live in Utah, PLEASE check to see if you favorite candidates have completed a questionnaire. If they haven't, please encourage them to do so right away!



City: _________________________________ State: ________Zip:_______________

Phone: ( ) _____________________________________________________

Email: ___________________________________________________________

Office: ____________ District: _____________ Party:______________________

INSTRUCTIONS: Please respond to the questions below by circling your answer. If you would be willing to sponsor the proposed legislation during your upcoming term of office, please also circle the "sponsor" option. We encourage you to include additional comments by attaching a separate sheet of paper, but we may not be able to publish all comments. Please print your name and SIGN each sheet of the questionnaire. If you have questions or need more information, please contact Sarah Thompson at If you do not respond, we will assume that you are hostile to gun rights or don't care about gun rights enough to respond.

Return questionnaire to: Utah Gun Owners Alliance, PO Box 1185, Sandy, UT 84091. You may also fax responses to 801-566-1625. We will NOT accept email responses because of problems with verifying authenticity. Questionnaires MUST be returned by April 17, but please return them as soon as possible. THANK YOU!


Background checks, which are currently mandated by federal law, are commonly used to register gun owners. Historically, registration of gun owners leads eventually to confiscation of the registered guns, as has happened in Nazi Germany, New York City, California, and Chicago.

1. Will you support legislation requiring that the Bureau of Criminal Identification IMMEDIATELY destroy the records of persons who successfully pass a background check?


Americans have a constitutionally guaranteed right to own private property, and thus to buy, sell, trade or otherwise acquire and dispose of it. This is, and has always been, true of firearms. Proposals to require background checks of firearms transfers between private persons, as opposed to dealers, infringe that right by requiring government permission to sell private property. (Question on next page.)

2. Will you oppose all proposals to require background checks and registration of guns and gun owners in order for private persons to sell their own property, whether at home, at a gun show, or by newspaper advertisements?


Firearms ownership is a right guaranteed by the US and Utah Constitutions. No one is required to pay a fee to exercise other rights such as the rights to worship, vote, or speak. Yet Utahns are currently charged a state fee in order to purchase a gun - even though background checks have been proven ineffective at stopping firearms homicides, and even though the federal government performs them for free.

3. Will you support legislation to eliminate the fee currently charged to perform the background check required to purchase a gun?


When the Federal Brady law was passed, Utah instituted its own background check system in order to avoid a five-day waiting period for purchases. The waiting period expired in 1998, and the federal government now performs free, instant background checks. However, Utahns are still being charged for the now redundant state background checks. This costs gun owners about half a million dollars each year.

4. Will you support legislation to eliminate the state background check and use the free, National Instant Check system?


The Utah Constitution guarantees the right to carry a firearm for defense of self and others. Because openly carrying a gun, although legal, is not accepted in Utah by law enforcement or by people who are afraid of guns, the only practical way to exercise this right is to carry a concealed firearm. While no one should have to pay to exercise a right, Utahns are charged high fees to obtain the permit necessary to exercise the right.

5. Will you support legislation to eliminate the fee for concealed carry permits?


6. If NO, will you support legislation to eliminate obsolete requirements for permits to make it easier and less expensive to obtain a permit?


Since carrying a firearm is a right, no one should have to ask permission from the government to exercise that right. Vermont, which has one of the lowest crime rates in the nation, allows any citizen to carry a firearm except to commit a crime. And under Utah law, a person can already carry a firearm openly without a permit. Carrying a firearm concealed at least as safe as carrying it openly.

7. Will you support legislation to enable any citizen who is not prohibited from possessing a firearm (due to felony, domestic violence, mental illness, etc.), and who is not using it to commit a violent crime, to carry a concealed firearm without having to obtain a permit?


Utah's state preemption law says that only the legislature may enact firearms laws. This prevents the confusion that results when local governments enact a patchwork of gun laws. For example, a person traveling from Ogden to St. George might have to be familiar with, and obey, a dozen or more different sets of laws.

8. Will you oppose efforts to enable local governments to enact firearms laws by repealing the state preemption law?


A person who has been convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence, is under a restraining order, has been committed to a mental institution, or has been dishonorably discharged, is considered too dangerous to possess a gun. Yet, such persons may hold positions of public trust including serving as physicians, attorneys, school teachers, judges, and jury members.

9. Will you support legislation providing that a person who is too dangerous to possess a firearm may not hold a position of public trust?


Utah's concealed carry law says that a permit is valid "without restriction", and that only the legislature may define secure areas where guns are banned. Scientific research shows that people legally carrying guns actually deter violent crime. Yet many public accommodations including stores, sports arenas, businesses open to the general public, and government entities are requiring patrons and employees to be disarmed. Criminals do not obey these gun bans, so only the law abiding people are disarmed.

10. Will you support legislation providing that any business open to the general public must permit legally carried firearms in areas accessible to the public, and providing penalties for failure to do so?


11. Will you oppose all efforts to create new victim disarmament zones where good citizens are prohibited from defending themselves and their families against violent criminals?


The need and the risks of having a firearm readily accessible vary tremendously from person to person. For example, an elderly person living in a high crime area has different needs than a suburban mom with toddlers. Yet gun control advocates want to force "one size fits all" requirements for gun safes and trigger locks on all gun owners, rather than recognizing that the gun owner is best able to judge what is appropriate for his/her own circumstances.

12. Will you oppose all efforts to impose government mandates for trigger locks, gun safes, "smart guns" or other proposals that prevent a gun owner from keeping a gun readily accessible?


Historically, a person has only lost his rights when he commits a felony. However, gun control advocates are proposing that gun rights be revoked for misdemeanor offenses, sometimes as minor as spanking a child or yelling at a spouse.

13. Will you oppose all proposals to revoke gun rights for misdemeanor offenses?


Gun control advocates promote the hysterical, but false, belief that certain firearms, which they call "assault weapons", are more dangerous than others because of the way they look, even though they are functionally identical. They also seek to ban the manufacture of magazines that hold more than ten bullets, even though such magazines are necessary for self defense against mobs in times of civil unrest.

14. Will you oppose restrictions on the manufacture, possession or sale of firearms based on their appearance, rather than on their function? These bans are sometimes known as "semi-automatic firearms bans" or "assault weapons bans".


15. Will you oppose restrictions on the manufacture, possession or sale of high capacity (more than ten bullet) magazines?


Some state entities persist in illegally banning guns, in violation of the will of the legislature and state law. The legislature currently has no way to rein in such rogue entities.

16. Will you support legislation to create a mechanism for the legislature to use its constitutionally mandated power of the budget to cut funding to state entities that willfully violate state law?



-- Candidate Authorization --

My signature affirms that the answers given above accurately represent my beliefs as a candidate for elective office.

Name: _____________________________________________ Date:_____________

Signature: _____________________________________________________________