Corbett Signs ‘Common-Sense’ Castle Doctrine Bill
The “Castle Doctrine,” a bill expanding citizens’ gun rights and how they’re allowed to protect themselves has been signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett, an act the governor has been promising since before he was even in office.
As PW contributor Jon Campisi wrote last week, the bill “sailed through the Senate with an overwhelming 45-5 majority,” with each nay vote coming from Philly legislators. It had passed the legislature before, though was vetoed by then-Governor Ed Rendell.
The Castle Doctrine allows Pennsylvania citizens to use deadly force “against an attacker in their home and any place where they have a legal right to be,” reads an NRA press release put out upon Corbett’s signing of the bill. “It also protects individuals from civil lawsuits by an attacker or attacker’s family when force is used.”
The NRA calls the bill a “common-sense measure” put into law for law-abiding citizens.
CeaseFirePA had been fighting this bill from the get-go, most recently sending out emails on June 22, urging Corbett to veto the “deadly” bill (though admitted it’d very likely be signed into law). The organization was working with Reading High School students to deliver letters to the governor (six students at the school have been killed by illegal guns within the last year), though “their request for a meeting with the Governor fell on deaf ears. No one from his office would take time to discuss the issue – or the tragic circumstances that compelled the students to travel to Harrisburg.”
Second Amendment advocates maintain the law will actually make most citizens safer. “Law-abiding gun owners should not have to fear prosecution for acting to prevent a violent crime,” Sen. Richard Alloway, a sponsor of the bill, said in a statement upon the governor’s signing. “I am thankful that the General Assembly has taken action to protect responsible gun owners who respond when facing a serious threat from a criminal. I would also like to thank the NRA for their strong leadership and hard work on this effort as it moved through the legislative process.”