Christie Vetoes Bill Requiring ‘Smart’ Guns

TRENTON -

Gov. Chris Christie issued a pocket veto Tuesday to a bill that would have changed New Jersey’s strict requirement that gun dealers eventually sell only so-called “smart handguns” that can only be fired by their owner.

A law passed in 2002 currently mandates that retailers sell only those kinds of handguns within three years of them being available anywhere in the country, but the law has never gone into effect because no guns have been classified as meeting the criteria.

Under the legislation Christie vetoed, retailers would have been allowed to continue selling traditional handguns but also required to sell at least one kind of smart gun within three years of their availability in New Jersey or elsewhere in the country.

Gun rights activists worried that actions taken in Maryland and California in 2014 could have activated the law in New Jersey. They argued the legislation compelled the market to accept “dangerous and unreliable technology.”