Utah goes ga-ga for guns

Published: Thursday, Jan. 27 2011 10:28 a.m. MST

The Utah House passed a bill by a 51-19 vote Wednesday designating the Browning pistol as the official state gun.

Around the country, this story has been stirring up a lot of attention during the last 24 hours. The New York Times, for example, ran an op-ed piece Wednesday wherein Gail Collins poked fun at Utah for its firearms predilection. (Note: the Collins piece ran in anticipation of but before the legislation passed the House on Wednesday.)

On Monday, the Utah State Capitol celebrated Browning Day, honoring John Moses Browning, native son and maker of the nominee for Official State Firearm. There were speeches, a proclamation, a flyover by a National Guard helicopter, and, of course, a rotunda full of guns. "We recognize his efforts to preserve the Constitution," Gov. Gary Herbert said, in keeping with what appears to be a new Republican regulation requiring all party members to mention the Constitution at least once in every three sentences.

Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman, sponsored the Official State Firearm legislation, HB219. This is the same Carl Wimmer, by the way, who believes that Utahns should be allowed to carry concealed weapons without a permit and who owns a tremendous mustache.

Some other gun news emanating from the Beehive State:

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, often packs heat when he attends public events in Utah.

Last month members of the Springville Junior Rifle Club took home 10th place in a national competitive shooting competition sponsored by the National Rifle Association.

e-mail: jaskar@desnews.com

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