Skip to main content

Patrick Leahy
Patrick Leahy, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee
Greg Sargent at the Washington Post reports that there's been some real movement on legislation that would put some teeth into federal efforts to curtail gun trafficking. Democrats Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Dick Durbin of Illinois, as well as Republicans Mark Kirk of Illinois and Susan Collins of Maine, are said to have signed off on the proposal:
The new legislation will blend two previously existing proposals — one championed by Leahy and Durbin; the other by Gillibrand and Kirk — into one bill. As one aide put it to me:  “This legislation will for the first time make gun trafficking a federal crime in order to provide tools to law enforcement to get illegal guns off the streets and away from criminal networks and street gangs. Currently, there is no federal law that defines gun trafficking as a crime.” The measure will also stiffen penalties for “straw purchasers” who knowingly buy guns for those who are not supposed to have them — a practice that many law enforcement groups and other experts believe contributes to gun violence.
Five weeks ago, Kirk and Gillibrand introduced the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2013. A week before that, Leahy had introduced his milder legislation.

Sargent suggests that support for this new legislation could possibly put the spurs to the bipartisan ad hoc Senate committee working on legislation to implement universal background checks on all purchases of firearms. Currently, private sales do not require a background check by the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System the way purchases from federally licensed dealers do. Two Democrats and two Republicans have been working on the background-check proposal for four weeks.

But negotiations on the proposal, legislation that poll after poll shows overwhelming public support for, have been stalled by Republican Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma over the issue of record-keeping. The National Rifle Association, other gun lobbies and many gun owners oppose keeping government records of background checks because they view this as creating a registry that later could be used to confiscate guns.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Mon Mar 04, 2013 at 12:21 PM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), These Green Mountains, and Daily Kos.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site