Democratic senators are calling on President Obama to close a gun control “loophole” that allowed Charleston shooter Dylann Roof to legally purchase a handgun, even though had a felony drug charge.
Connecticut Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal have pointed out the “default to proceed” rule under the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, which allows licensed firearms dealers to sell a firearm if the FBI doesn’t return the buyer’s criminal background check within three business days.
Murphy and Blumenthal’s call to action is in direct response to the Charleston shooting, where Roof legally obtained a handgun when he otherwise shouldn’t have.
”We shouldn’t give known criminals the benefit of the doubt when it comes to guns,” said Blumenthal and Murphy in a joint statement. “If law enforcement needs more than three days to ensure they’re not giving weapons to dangerous people, Washington must allow them the time to do their jobs. If we refuse to act, we’re just biding time until this happens again.”
While Murphy and Blumenthal make compelling points, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) argues that while Roof’s ability to purchase a firearm was a “bureaucratic bungling,” it doesn’t merit introducing new gun control legislation.
“It’s disastrous that this bureaucratic mistake prevented existing laws from working and blocking an illegal gun sale,” said Grassley. “The facts undercut attempts to use the tragedy to enact unnecessary gun laws.”
(This article was a submission from freelance writer Brent Rogers)