Fortunato calls on Governor to keep firearms businesses open – closure violates Constitution

March 27, 2020


Jay Inslee

Office of the Governor

PO Box 40002

Olympia, WA 985004-0002


Governor Inslee,

I call on you to immediately amend your March 23, 2020, “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order to include firearm-related businesses and shooting ranges in the list of businesses and industries in the “Essential Workforce Critical Workers” list.

The order allows businesses that provide services “necessary to maintain the safety and sanitation of residences,” as well as “all facilities used by law enforcement personnel,” to remain open. If breweries, wineries, and cannabis stores are considered “essential” to the daily lives of Washingtonians during the COVID-19 crisis, then surely firearms-related businesses and shooting ranges must rank at an even higher level of importance.

Firearms-related businesses and shooting ranges provide critical supplies to law enforcement and security, not to mention ensuring that hard-working Washingtonians have access to products and training needed to defend themselves and their families. Washington residents that are currently authorized to lawfully purchase a firearm are guaranteed that “access” by the Washington State Constitution. (Article I, Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution, which states: “the right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired.”).

I implore you to respect a fundamental tenant of the state constitution, and reconsider your decision.


Senator Phil Fortunato

31st Legislative District