Gun auctions are one of the most important fund-raising aspects of all those annual conservation group banquets so many of us attend every year. Virtually every chapter of virtually every hunter-based conservation group out there uses the banquet gun auctions to raise money for chapter projects. And since nothing gets the bids going hot and heavy like actually seeing the gun you’re bidding on, it makes sense for those groups to be able to have the actual guns there at the banquet, right?

Apparently not if you live in New Jersey. Thanks to Jersey’s gun-control laws, guns that are being auctioned at a banquet cannot actually be displayed at the banquet. Why? Duh! Because everyone knows that Ruffed Grouse Society or Ducks Unlimited chapter banquets are one of the leading sources of guns used in crime.

But at least one New Jersey state senator thinks the whole thing is a bit silly, and has filed a bill that would allow non-profit groups at banquets to stop using photographs of the guns they’re auctioning off.

From this story on

Democratic State Sen. Donald Norcross, whose Ca mden County district is one of the most densely developed in the state, may seem an unlikely champion of hunters and gun advocates. His bill to give licensed firearms dealers the right to display their wares at fund-raising auctions for nonprofit organizations recently won unanimous approval in the full Senate. A companion measure in the Assembly, cosponsored by John Burzichelli (D., Gloucester), is in committee. Should they become law, the bills would reverse a 2008 ruling that has limited dealers to showing only pictures of firearms at the auctions, which typically benefit groups devoted to hunting and outdoor sports, Norcross said last week.

Here’s for hoping the bill passes so Garden State hunters can finally start fondling all those commemorative shotguns and rifles again. But I’m curious: are there any other states that have a similar law about displaying firearms at auction, or is this abomination unique to New Jersey?