Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) introduced proposed legislation on July 14 that would make it a federal crime to sell or transfer two or more firearms to someone prohibited from gun ownership and to provide false information on a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) firearm transaction record.

This is Gillibrand’s second push to address illegal gun trafficking with a bill focused on cutting the daily flow of illegal guns to the nation’s streets.

“Month after month, year after year, illegal guns tear apart communities in New York and across the country,” Gillbrand said in a conference call. “We have to crack down and we have to do our job to stop it.”

The bill has received bipartisan support with Republican Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois signing on as a co-sponsor. However, it will likely face an uphill battle in the Republican-dominated Congress. Similar legislation announced by Gillibrand in 2013 fell two votes shy of defeating a Republican-led filibuster.

The measure is named for Hadiya Pendleton and Nyasia Pryear-Yard, two teenage victims of gun violence who were slain in Chicago and Brooklyn, respectively. Both were killed with illegal guns.

According to Gillibrand, roughly 90 percent of guns used in New York City crimes come from out of state, including the guns used to murder three police officers in the past year. But there is currently no federal law that identifies firearm trafficking as a crime, she said.

The proposed bill would change that, targeting gangs and other criminal networks that smuggle firearms to states with strict gun laws. The bill would impose stiff penalties, especially for organizers of trafficking rings.

According to Gillibrand, nearly 70 percent of the 8,539 firearms recovered in New York in 2013 came from out of state. Many of them were acquired legally in Southern states with looser gun laws and smuggled north through the I-95 corridor, known as the “iron pipeline.” The majority of gun trafficking to New York originates in Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida, according to Third Way, a left-leaning public policy think tank.

For more, go to:

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand bill targets illegal gun trafficking to New York
Bipartisan bill introduced to make gun trafficking a felony
State Leaders Announce Bill To Stop Trafficked Guns
Senator Gillibrand Pushes to Make Gun Trafficking a Federal Crime
Gillibrand Announces Bill To Combat Gun Trafficking

Calls for more gun control laws ignores fact that criminals don’t obey laws

The revelation that the national background check system failed to prevent Charleston shooter Dylann Roof from obtaining a firearm prompted FBI Director James Comey on July 10 to point the finger at his own agency’s incompetence, not existing laws.

Roof’s admission of drug possession, which would have disqualified him from purchasing a gun from a licensed retail outlet, did not surface within the prescribed three-day time frame. He was, therefore, not prevented from buying the gun eventually linked to shooting nine people to death in a church.

But, as James Alan Fox writes in USA Today on July 12, the fact that existing laws would have prevented Roof from purchasing a firearm if the background check had been properly executed has not tempered the knee-jerk urge to substitute ideological “finger-pointing” for intelligent discussion. “Both sides of the gun-control debate have used the same dubious talking point to advance their diametrically opposed agendas,” he writes.

“Suddenly, everyone had a scapegoat,” writes Fox, a professor of criminology, law and public policy at Northeastern University, co-author of “Extreme Killing: Understanding Serial and Mass Murder,” and a member of USA TODAY’s Board of Contributors.

“Gun-control advocates wailed about the need to close every loophole in examining the backgrounds of prospective buyers: Not only is the existing system in need of repair, but it also should be extended to online and gun shows transactions — elements contained in pending congressional legislation.

“Gun-rights advocates focused on the very same failure that cleared Roof’s purchase, but for different reasons,” he continues. “In their view, we need to enforce laws properly, but nothing more. ‘It’s disastrous that this bureaucratic mistake prevented existing laws from working,’ Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said. ‘The facts undercut attempts to use the tragedy to enact unnecessary gun laws.'”

The bottom line, Fox writes, if Roof been denied the gun purchase, “there would have been many other avenues for him to beg, borrow or steal the firepower he desired.”

For example, he notes, Adam Lanza and the Columbine killers were too young to purchase their weapons legally, but easily found older friends to buy for them. “High-profile mass shootings invariably spark arguments from gun-control advocates and gun-rights groups. Both sides view them as reasons why more or less gun control is the answer, and both sides are wrong,” Fox writes.

A July 13 article by Charles C.W. Cooke in National Review echoes Fox’s contentions.
“The suggestion that this mistake has exposed a ‘loophole’ in the law is completely off-base. The reason that killer wasn’t flagged is that the requisite information wasn’t in the database. But that’s not a ‘loophole’; it’s a data-entry error. If there’s a wider problem here it’s that the authorities are incompetent, not that the law doesn’t give them enough latitude. Naturally, this hasn’t stopped the idle call for new rules.”

The FBI has three days to find a reason to nix a pending sale. If nothing surfaces to prevent it, the sale proceeds — for good reason, Cooke notes. “Just as the police are forbidden from detaining suspects without charge — and just as one cannot be imprisoned unless prosecutors can prove one’s guilt — the government is not permitted to remove your Second Amendment rights without good reason. If they can’t find that reason within three days of your attempting to purchase a firearm, they have to stop trying.”

Yet, as AWR Hawkins writes on on July 14, facts do not stop anti-gun media campaigners such as the Washington Post from calling for more laws and regulations. In a recent editorial, the Post “admitted that new control laws might not work, but suggested that it’s no reason to forgo implementing them,” he writes, citing examples of mass shootings and rampant gun violence in places with the most gun control laws, such as Chicago.

“The (Washington Post’s) solution to these gun control failures?” Hawkins asks. “Pass more gun control.”

For more, go to:

The Charleston Shooter Didn’t Benefit from a ‘Loophole’ and the Law Doesn’t Need Changing
South Carolina tragedy underlines the need for more effective firearm restrictions
How the media’s obsession with mass killings is killing us
Gun Control Groups Lie About Non-Existent Background Check “Loophole,” Blame NRA Instead of FBI Screw Up on Charleston Killer

Pennsylvania lawmaker to resubmit bill allowing residents to sue over local gun laws

Pennsylvania State Rep. Mark Keller (R-Perry) plans to reintroduce a bill to restore a 2014 law that allows residents and groups to sue local municipalities over their firearms ordinances.

In June, a Commonwealth Court ruled the Pennsylvania General Assembly violated the state constitution when it attached the law to a bill about scrap-metal theft. Pennsylvania’s constitution limits most legislation to a single subject. According to Andrew Staub of the PA Independent, Keller said he will reintroduce the bill as stand-alone legislation.

Passing the bill on its own will alleviate the problem, Keller told Staub, stressing the content of the legislation was not the issue. “It wasn’t thrown out because it was bad legislation or unconstitutional,” he said. “That wasn’t the factor, so don’t let people hang their hat on that issue.”

According to Staub, Keller said the state already has a preemption law that says “no county, municipality or township may in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition or ammunition components when carried or transported for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth.”

Supporters say the law stops the “proliferation of patchwork gun regulations” that makes “law-abiding gun owners criminals when they visit a municipality and are unaware of different ordinances,” Staub writes.

For more, go to:

PA legislator reloads bill allowing NRA to sue over local gun laws
New Jersey: Chris Christie Is Sitting on a Bill to Seize Guns From Domestic Abusers | Mother Jones
Whataburger Says ‘No’ To Loosened Texas Gun Laws
Colorado: Gun Control groups call for safe storage laws after 7-year-old shot
California: Two Anti-Gun Bills to be Heard in Committee
Proposed Seattle Gun Tax is Bad Policy and Bad Law
Group Asks Idaho Cities One-By-One To Change Local Gun Laws
Sen. George Amedore bill would ban sale of gun cellphone cases