Because, in part, it's indefensible.
Though the rabidly anti-gun Roanoke Times tries its best this morning with this:
"Among [then-Governor Doug Wilder's] office's high-profile cases, [then-Virginian-Pilot reporter Margaret] Edds reported, 'were charges against a United Parcel Service driver accused of stealing 850 guns from a Northern Virginia firearms importer, a New Jersey-to-Richmond drug gang accused of 11 murders in 45 days, a suburban Richmond gun dealer charged with selling hundreds of weapons to East Coast gun runners and a New York-to-Richmond gang the dealer helped supply with almost 300 illegal guns.'"
Really smart legislators, and a really smart governor, along with really smart people editorializing for newspapers around the state, thought we needed a new law because a UPS driver broke existing law and because members of a drug gang broke existing law and a gun dealer broke existing law by selling "illegal guns" (?) to another drug gang.
The new law was going to be obeyed by the lawless, you see ...
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The lesson this bunch should have learned from olden days (but after Wilder left office) was this:
We already have lots of laws. And we have lots of prison cells.
A match made in heaven.