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Gun Rights: Seattle Mayor Fails to Check Himself, Wrecks Himself



The name of the game today is “state preemption laws,” and today’s loser is Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrel.

Gun-rights supporters in Washington State have been casting a side-eye at Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrel for quite some time, and today the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) is calling him out. Recently, Harrel called a press conference to bemoan the fact that state preemption laws prevent him from making special new gun laws just for the city he governs. As is so often the case with anti-gun politicians, however, Harrel used the wrong orifice to express his opinions. The CCRKBA made the some observations in an official statement of their own in response. I noticed that they’re far too polite to include pictures, but I’m sure not! Please enjoy the below; text by CCRKBA and images by Trace Munson.


Anti-gun Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell wasted no time in attempting to create a myth early in his tenure when he told reporters Washington is “one of the few states” with a firearms preemption law, and he needs to come clean immediately, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

At his presser, Harrell—a longtime opponent of state preemption, which guarantees uniformity of firearms law from border to border—declared, “You will hear this year me lead efforts on trying to get relief from the exemption RCW 9.41.290. You’ll hear me talking about that. I don’t know how many lives have to be lost before we realize we’re one of the few states that has that kind of restriction allowing the state to govern the laws we need for our city of Seattle.”

Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrel consults aide prior to press conference, c. 2022, colorized

“Bruce Harrell needs to reload his brain before shooting his mouth off,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “Forty-two states have preemption laws, and that is hardly ‘a few’ states, as Harrell would have the public believe. Washington was among the first to adopt this law in 1983, and its statute has been used as a model by other states when they adopted similar statutes because they all saw the common sense of gun law uniformity.

Our recommendations for Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrel for his next press conference.

“Harrell and other anti-gunners would have us roll back the calendar to a time when a literal state of confusion existed in Washington,” he continued. “Before preemption was wisely adopted by the State Legislature, we had a checkerboard of often conflicting local gun regulations. State lawmakers properly took control of this mess and cleaned it up with a single set of regulations that apply equally from the Canada border to the Columbia River.

“This is why gun owners don’t trust low-caliber politicians,” Gottlieb observed. “They don’t shoot straight. Washington has led the nation in so many ways, and that certainly applies to gun law responsibility. Our state provided the road map for the majority of other states to bring not only uniformity but integrity to gun laws, and Harrell wants to bring back what amounts to chaos.

Pictured: mainstream media fact-checking Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrel

“Mayor Harrell tried to invent a myth, and we’re shocked that nobody in the local media challenged him on this,” Gottlieb said. “It is not difficult to find the truth about preemption and how widespread this reasonable, rational approach has become. The question reporters should now be asking is if the mayor was so wrong about preemption, what else is he wrong about?”


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