Yesterday it was nice. This morning brings a downpour. Being in this line today will be less fun. Making everybody with legislative staff, state employee or registered lobbyist badges get screened and scanned before entering the Pocahontas Building to do (or watch) the people’s business will get us all soaked. (Even U.S. Senator Tim Kaine got caught in it …for a while.)
Hey I get it, being “tough on guns” is vital, a virtue, and what good is virtue if you do not signal it? In 36 years of almost daily attendance to General Assembly sessions, the occasions when something stupid was done with a gun inside the General Assembly buildings usually involved legislators themselves. No legislator stood in this line yesterday — they sailed past us.
The line at this point was a mix of people with badges and those without, and those without turned left at the building corner and moved down toward Main Street and the front public entrance. The general public has always been screened. The rest of us with badges could use the Bank Street doors and just wave at the guards unless they decided somebody needed screening. This is why I spent $100 to renew my lobbyist badge this year.
Maybe today there will be more than two scanners on Main Street and one on Bank Street? Or maybe today they will trust us known regulars to abide by the new rule against guns just like we’ve complied patiently with all the rest of the rules? Frankly, the Second Amendment activists who did come armed in past years never caused a problem, either. I always felt safe when they were all there, even if it meant never getting near the elevators.