The state House has passed and sent to the Senate a bill that would expand legal protections for people who use lethal force in self-defense.

The bill passed the House by a comfortable margin but only after supporters, for a second day in a row, cut off debate on the bill and also on possible gun control amendments to expand what’s called the “castle doctrine”.

Or, as Philadelphia Democrat Curtis Thomas called it, “The doctrine of shoot ‘em first and ask questions later.”

Republican Scott Perry is the sponsor of the measure:

“I think that’s hyperbole on Rep. Thomas’s part. This is a constitutional rights bill.”

The bill would expand the legal right to use deadly force in self-defense, with no duty to retreat, currently guaranteed in a person’s home, to essentially any place they have a right to be.

A spokesman for Senate majority Republicans said House passage of the bill without gun-related amendments enhanced the possibility that the Senate would consider it in the limited time left in the session, though a Senate vote was not certain.

Reported by KYW Newsradio’s Tony Romeo

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