BREAKING: House Passes Second Gun-Control Bill to Close ‘Charleston Loophole’

Take action on these bills (click on image) as they head to the Senate for consideration. (Photo: Facebook)

The House voted today to approve another anti-gun bill.  The Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2019 (H.R. 1112) passed by a 228-198 vote.  Three Republicans joined Democrats in voting in favor of the measure.  Seven Democrats broke party lines and voted against the bill.  This marks the second major gun bill to clear the House this week.

The legislation was spearheaded by House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-South Carolina), Rep. Joe Cunningham (D-South Carolina) and Rep. Pete King (R-New York).  It extends the initial review period for background checks from three to ten business days.

If the bill becomes law, a gun buyer will have to take the following steps when purchasing a firearm from a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL):

  1. Complete ATF Form 4473 (Firearms Transaction Record) so that a NICS background check can be done.
  2. After the form is submitted, the federal government has up to 10 business days to determine whether the FFL may proceed with the transfer.
  3. If ten days pass without a determination, then the buyer can petition the government for permission to proceed with the transfer.
  4. The government then has an additional ten business days to act on the petition.
  5. If the government does not act on the petition within the additional ten-day period then the FFL may proceed with the transfer.

Essentially, the bill would allow the federal government to delay the acquisition of a firearm by up to 20 business days just by refusing or failing to act on the transfer request.  It should be noted that a NICS check is only valid for 30 days.  NRA warns that buyers could be caught in an endless cycle of delays under H.R. 1112 because the wait time is based on business days, not just days.

As reported by the Wall Street Journal: The FBI indicates that roughly 92% of the NICS checks render an instant decision.  If the check is clean, the FFL will get a notice to “proceed” with the sale.  If the check indicates the buyer is a prohibited person, then the FFL receives a notice that the transfer is “denied” and the sale cannot go through.

In about 8% of cases, the decision is “delayed,” and under the current law, a buyer need only wait three days for the government to act.  If no action is taken within the three-day period then the FFL may proceed with the sale.

Those supporting the bill state it is needed to close the so-called “Charleston loophole,” arguing that the current three-day waiting period allowed the shooter in the Emanuel AME Church attack to obtain his weapon.

Reverend Sharon Risher, whose mother and cousins were shot and killed at the Emanuel AME Church spoke after the bill was passed.

“The hate-filled man who killed my mother and cousins four years ago never should have gotten his hands on a gun, and yet, through a loophole, he was able to arm himself and take the lives of nine church-goers, peacefully in prayer,” said Risher.  “No family should have to live with the pain of having a loved one taken by senseless and preventable gun violence.  It is high time for Congress to address this loophole, properly enforce our background checks system and keep guns out of the hands of people with hateful intentions.”

BREAKING: House Passes Bill to Criminalize Private Transfers, Sales

Republican leaders slammed the legislation.  They argued that the extension places excessive hurdles in the way of those trying to lawfully purchase a firearm.

“I’m not sure if H.R. 1112 was written this way out of just messed-up writing or malice.  I’m not sure, but it does do this and there’s no mistaking what is written,” said House Committee ranking member Doug Collins (R-Georgia) on the floor.  “As I said many times, we do not vote on aspirational ideas in this chamber.  They’re great to debate, but we don’t vote on aspirational ideas.  We vote on words on paper and words on paper are just as I have described.  I will let the American people determine what the intent was here.”

Chris W. Cox, the executive director of the National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action released a written statement in response to the bill’s passage.

“The anti-gun politicians in the House of Representatives continue to employ the shameful tactic of exploiting tragedies to market gun control that won’t prevent criminals from committing murder.  It’s a sham and the Charleston Loophole bill is the perfect example of their dishonesty.  The assertion that a supposed 10-day delay would have prevented a crime that took place over 60 days after the initial delay is ridiculous.  This legislation would not have prevented the Charleston murders, and even worse, the legislation is so poorly drafted it would put law-abiding citizens who need a firearm for self-defense at risk of trapping them in an endless loop of delays.  The NRA will continue to fight for the constitutional right of law-abiding Americans to defend themselves and their families without apology,” Cox said.

Although passed by the House, it is unlikely that the bill will make it through the Republican-controlled Senate.  Even if it did, a statement from the White House opposing the bill indicates that President Trump would likely veto the measure if it were presented for his signature.

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About the author: John Thomas is a U.S. Navy veteran, and a former prosecutor and defense attorney with over 20 years of experience in state and federal courts. He has handled everything from traffic tickets to first-degree murder cases and is a long-time supporter of Second Amendment rights and the rights of individuals to defend themselves, their families and their property.

{ 14 comments… add one }
  • George March 9, 2019, 4:29 pm

    So I was at the guns show. I wanted to buy a nice light weight semi-auto pistol. I sat down to fill out the paper work. For some reason there were two sets of paper work the 4473 Fed form and a state set.

    I filled out the 4473 and started on the state form. Before I had completed the state form the young lady who was assisting me said “you are approved’. I had to complete the state form before I could receive my new pistol and ammo.

    The whole process took about 15 minutes.

    The whole process took about 15 minutes.

  • Luis Bonilla March 1, 2019, 1:15 pm

    It’s the asshole move !!! Delay Delay ,
    They waste more tax dollars on paperwork .

    It will be the worst thing to do , they waste time they need to fix
    problems that really matter . Like the real criminals , they let loose
    If a student carries a gun into school , he or she will not hesitate to
    use it , if a teacher tries to confiscate the gun .

    Like I said ( ASSHOLE MOVE ) is Red Flag

  • Robert J. Lucas March 1, 2019, 10:06 am

    Socialism>Communism>Gun Control=Disarmament=Extermination…

    • Winston March 1, 2019, 2:04 pm

      585 billionaire families and entities = NYC-Boston-Hollywood American corporate neo-liberalism = gun confiscation = economic serfdom = replacement population comprised of brown illegal aliens along with a black sub-population empowered to divide the white majority.

  • kimberpross March 1, 2019, 9:36 am

    I venture to say that having a 20 day delay will have no impact on the sociopath that is planning a mass murder like Columbine, Sandy Hook, or Parkland. By their nature, those killers planned out their attack and had all the tools needed well in advance of their murders. For the uninformed, MSM lemings, they think this is a positive step to eliminate mass killings when the mass killer will still do the deed. This legislation does nothing to address their behavior and only places another legal block in the wall of infringement that will catch unsuspecting law abiding citizens who are trying to follow the maze of laws. Vote these idiots out of office and protect our freedom.

  • Strongmindjones March 1, 2019, 9:27 am

    The liberals focus on the feable and fearful and the media supports them, those of us with strong will and independent thought need to speak up, go to hearings, write your congressman, take action! There are more of us against the liberal agenda than for, we need to make our voices heard!

  • Charles March 1, 2019, 9:13 am

    No way Trump signs anything into law, that Pelosi supports, after she screwed up his plans for the wall.

  • Charles March 1, 2019, 9:08 am

    Pelosi and company, have been reading too many fairy tales. They need to wake up to the real world.

    • Winston March 1, 2019, 2:14 pm

      I believe, it is the 1/2 of the white US population that needs to wake up to the reality that supporting our bigoted System that actually wants to erase us, is increasingly counterproductive.

  • joefoam March 1, 2019, 8:05 am

    Have a listen to rep and former Navy SEAL Crenshaws take on these bills. In 95 seconds he exposes the waste of time they represent.

  • Michael March 1, 2019, 7:43 am

    The Democrats will take your guns when they get a majority in the House and Senate.

  • Magicman March 1, 2019, 5:59 am

    The new socialism at work. Mao’s little red book, red berets and Che Guevara T-shirts will be required next. The Republicans that voted along with Clyburn and Cunningham have personal security provided by the taxpayers. Since law abiding citizens are not required to be protected by the police we need to protect ourselves. Even Brazil which has one of the highest crime rates in the world has had to relax their gun bans by citizens to control crime.

    The true criminal is a politician, term limits need to be put in place and current politicians need to concentrate on a living wage, bringing jobs back in this country and stop the illegal immigrants from getting past the border. Even the British have realized communism/socialist propaganda is not feasible. Also refuse to support Hollywood actors that are anti 2A or Socialist. (Liam Neeson, John Cusack) 2 name just two.

    • Dwight March 1, 2019, 9:44 am

      I think that I read several years back when they were campaigning on term limits to get a new Congress and gained control of the house they did pass a term limit bill which was set at 12 terms. Congress = 48 yrs. Senate = 72 how’s that for term limits.

  • Bobs your uncle February 28, 2019, 7:42 pm

    So whats the problem? now all our troubles are over, thanks to Democrats. now lets get to those other important issues like flatulent cows, fossil fuels etc. you’ll have something to think about as you ride to your new job at the collective in the back of a cattle hauler, just like in the promised land of Cuba, oh what a wonderful future is ahead of us.

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