Washington Gun Rights Measure, Initiative 591 (2014)

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Washington Initiative 591
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Type:Initiative to the Legislature
Referred by:Citizens
Status:On the ballot
2014 measures
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November 4
Initiative 594
Initiative 591
Advisory Vote No. 8
Advisory Vote No. 9
Initiative 1351
EndorsementsFull text
Local measures
The Washington Gun Rights Measure, Initiative 591 is on the November 4, 2014 ballot in the state of Washington as an Initiative to the Legislature. If approved by voters, the measure would prevent the government from confiscating firearms without due process and implementing background checks unless a federal standard is established.[1]

Text of measure

The certified ballot title reads as follows:[2]

This measure would prohibit government agencies from confiscating guns or other firearms from citizens without due process, or from requiring background checks on firearm recipients unless a uniform national standard is required.

Should this measure be enacted into law? Yes [ ] No [ ][3]


I-591 was filed shortly before a competing ballot measure was. The measure, I-594, which is seeking to regulate firearms sales between private individuals, including implementing extensive background checks.[4]



Protect Our Gun Rights is leading the campaign in support of the initiative.[5]



  • Protect Our Gun Rights[5]
  • Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms[6]
  • Gun Owners Action League of Washington
  • Washington State Rifle and Pistol Association
  • Washington Arms Collectors
  • Washington State Law Enforcement Firearms Instructor Association
  • Hunters Heritage Council
  • Ferry County Tea Party
  • Walla Walla Tea Party Patriots


Supporters of I-594 are opposed to this initiative. Zach Silk, the campaign manager for the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility - the group sponsoring I-594 - accused the supporters of I-591 of "trying to muddy the waters with competing initiatives, saying, "The fastest path to victory is confusion. I think that indeed is the gun lobby's strategy."[7]

Additionally, in their endorsement of competing measure Initiative 594, The Seattle Times endorsed a "No" vote on Initiative 591, calling the initiative a "wholly inappropriate, unnecessary and potentially a reckless retreat."[8]


See also: Polls, 2014 ballot measures
Washington Initiative 591 (2014)
Poll Support OpposeUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Elway Poll
4/9/2014 - 4/13/2014
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing the initiative process in Washington

In order to qualify for the November 2014 ballot, supporters must submit a minimum of 246,372 valid signatures by January 3, 2014. According to Washington law, the number of signatures required to land a measure on the ballot must be equal to or greater than 8% of the number of votes cast for the office of governor in the most recent previous election.[9]

Supporters submitted an estimated 340,000 signatures on November 21, 2013.[10]

Related measures

See also

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