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Lawmakers want to silence dissent on guns

Not only are some conservatives in the Legislature bent on blocking any local control of guns, they want to keep local governments from complaining about it. Mike Taylor, a lobbyist for the Unified Government of Kansas City, Kan., testified last week against a bill that would prohibit local governments from banning the open carry of guns and knives and would prevent them from using taxpayer money for gun-buyback programs. After the hearing, Rep. Brett Hildabrand, R-Shawnee, questioned whether Taylor broke a law the Legislature passed last year prohibiting local governments from using tax dollars to advocate for gun regulations. Taylor said this was another attempt to silence dissent in the Statehouse. "We're seeing that more and more in this building," Taylor said, "and I think it's wrong."