NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Connecticut senators introduced federal legislation Wednesday that would ban guns near polling sites.
The Vote Without Fear Act would make it illegal to have a firearm within 100 yards of any federal election site. There are exemptions for on-duty law enforcement officers and security guards.
The bill was introduced by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), with senators Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania), Dianne Feinstein (D-California), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York), Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts), Jeanne Shaheen (D-New Hampshire) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) also listed as cosponsors.
“At the foundation of American democracy is the right to make your voice heard. Free and fair elections cannot happen occur in the face of armed intimidation at the polls, but that’s become a disturbing reality for some Americans, as extremists driven by conspiracy theories about voter fraud are increasingly showing up to polling places with guns,” Murphy said in the written announcement. “This legislation will ensure voters and election workers continue to feel safe participating in the democratic process.”
Breaking the law would bring either a fine and/or up to a year in prison. It does not specify how much the fine would be.
There are six states that currently bar guns at the polls.