Federal Lawmakers to Reintroduce Universal Background Check Bill

The Hill.com is reporting that federal lawmakers are once again introducing legislation that would require background checks on all firearm sales, including private transfers made over the Internet or at gun shows.

Known as the “Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act,” it would basically mandate universal background checks in all 50 states.

“This bill is anti-criminal, and will help keep spouses, kids and communities safe by preventing dangerous people from getting guns,” sponsor of the bill Rep. Mike Thompson told The Hill.

“It’s also pro-Second Amendment,” added Thompson, a Democrat from California. “I’m a hunter and a gun owner. I support the Second Amendment. If this bill undermined the rights of gun owners, my name wouldn’t be on it.”

The bill was also supported by other notable pro-gun control sympathizers: Reps. Peter King (R-NY), Elizabeth Esty (D-CT), Kathleen Rice (D-NY) and Bob Dold (R-IL).

Not surprisingly, the bill was endorsed by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

“There is no doubt expanded background checks save lives,” said Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

“It is time for Congress to finish the job and expand Brady background checks to the thousands of gun sales that happen every day online and at gun shows.”

A version of the “Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act” was introduced in 2013. However, it died in Congress. How this latest version differs from its previous incarnation is not quite clear. It may in fact be the same exact bill. Thompson is planning to introduce at some point this week.

A video promoting the 2013 version of the bill:

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Paul September 29, 2017, 5:51 pm

    Hey Chick,
    You are exactly correct,however as we all know, the Devil is in the details.

    • Scott Spoerry January 26, 2018, 4:57 am

      I pretty much agree about gun stories in mainstream journalism. And to be honest I worked almost 25 years for CNN. I found myself very often explaining facts to writers and reporters that were just never exposed to gun culture. It’s not that they are stupid, they just are a bit lazy sometimes and a story like a record day for background checks is easy to write without throwing in much context.
      My least favorite task was making people take the words “assault rifle” out scripts and web stories. And in fact the CNN Stylebook, which staff are supposed to be familiar with, is totally correct (as of 4 years ago anyway). It says simply that if the rifle lacks fully automatic or bursts choices for a single trigger pull, it’s not an assault rifle. I would always use “assault STYLE rifle” since that’s what it is (if it’s black or tactical looking, you know what I mean). It does not help that federal laws on modern sporting rifles like AR-15 style or AK-47 style call them “assault rifles” in the law itself…remember the federal “Assault Weapons” law that finally expired (thank goodness).
      And gun shows were another favorite of mind. I would constantly remind my colleagues that most of the booths or tables are always occupied by people with FFL permits as dealers, and HAD to do background checks by law.
      My point of course was that the so called “gun show loophole” is actually a very very small hole. But there are always a find people without that obligation looking to sell firearms, either at a table or outside in the parking lot.
      My suggestion has always been to make it possible for gun show staff to have a background check booth and the ability to run names through the system. At most it would require a minor change in regulations, and it would probably actually make a few dollars for the gun show to help make sure everybody in the building gets a check if they buy something. Just like that, NO gunshow loophole. Personally, I almost always handle my sales (which are rare) through my local firearms dealer. And in fact I am just getting ready to put a Walther PPK/S on the GunsAmerica.com website, and will use my local dealer to handle the transfer to another FFL dealer. I don’t EVER want to learn that I sold a weapon to some lunatic who might have failed a real background check. I would hope that we all worry about that.
      Of course I also believe that it should NOT be against the law to lie to the FBI unless you are under oath. I know President Trump agrees with me, don’t you think? Freedom of speech should mean freedom to tell lies too….damn it.
      Finally, I don’t know what’s wrong with so many men in this country that makes them want to go out with a mass killing. I do think that it’s wrong that we name them on the air as much as we do since I think they get this twisted idea that everybody will finally know their names, and they will be famous for ever. If we have to mention their background ok…once if it’s relevant in a paragraph about their histories, but we (and I am blaming myself and my colleagues in the non-stop television news business) find it too easy to just keep reporting their names and showing their pictures endlessly for days and days. And is just too convenient for news producers to use that great amateur camera phone video. I get it, I know it’s harder to tell those stories without the so much of that frightful video that comes in, but network news producers like me have to think about how WE contribute to this trend. It’s too easy for disturbed people to plan and carry out things they know will make their names and images famous.
      And I am not sure video games are really a big part of the problem. It’s something in the way we learn to behave in our society. And killing people over a girlfriend or ex-wife? Maybe we need more emphasis with young men (it always seems to be men anyway) on how stupid and evil that is. But I know I am asking too much.

  • Chick May 20, 2016, 10:50 am

    Where do these people get that they can make internet firearm purchases without background checks? Anytime a firearm is shipped, it must go to a FFL holder, who must complete a firearm transfer and do a background check. That is the law. Now, if people are not following that, I don’t know what to say. I do know that I have bought numerous firearms across the internet, and had them shipped to different FFL holders, who treat the transfer just like they are selling the firearm to me. I bought 2 rifles in an estate auction, and the FFL Shipper did not send the correct paperwork and documentation with them. I had to wait 5 more days, for that paperwork to reach the FFL on my end, before he would complete the transfer and give me my rifles. I can also add that this FFL holder who took receipt on my end, knows me, and has sold me firearms before.

  • dale May 19, 2015, 8:08 pm

    Here we go again with big brother tryingvto take away our 2nd amendments rights away little by little. We all know criminals don’t bother with background checks, so all this does is make law abiding citizens go through harder and more paperwork then needs be. What is wrong be the thousands of laws on the books now that they don’t enforce Or don’t have the time or space in the court system. What Will this law produce? Just a registration list for confiscation.!! Don’t try to tell me that it isn’t I wasn’t born yesterday. We do not need anymore background check laws.

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