Skip to main content

Lindsay Graham is quoted by The Hill as follows:

"This idea of private individuals transferring their weapons and having to go through a background check makes no sense," Graham continued on Sunday. "€œBefore you'd expand the background check there are 76,000 people last year who failed a background check and less than 1 percent got prosecuted. There are 9,000 people in 2010 failed a background check who were felons on the run, so before you expand background checks to include private individuals let'€™s put resources into the current system we have."
He's missing the point (or perhaps obfuscating it).

76,000 people didn'€™t get a gun, at least 9,000 of them legitimately and likely many more.

Certainly there should be a discussion about enforcement. According to the ATF, not every violation is worthy of prosecution. The Chicago Tribune reports that "paperwork" crimes are the violations most often not prosecuted.

If private sales account for 40% of all gun sales (and thanks to legislation prohibiting research or record-keeping, the number is debatable), then requiring background checks for private sales might have denied another 50,000 people a gun.

Background checks of private sales might have prevented 12 mass killings between 1982 and 2012, according to data compiled by Mother Jones.

But Senator Graham does get one thing right: we need to put more resources into the system we have, specifically into NICS.

According to a Bloomberg article by Frank A. S. Campbell, after it was learned that the shooter at Virginia Tech in 2007 obtained his guns legally because information about his mental health struggles was not in the database:

"Congress responded by passing the NICS Improvement Act, authorizing $1.3 billion in grants to fund state agencies and court systems to create the necessary information infrastructure. Yet even after additional mass shootings, the authorized sums were never requested by the president or appropriated by Congress; indeed, the plan has received only token funding -- $50 million since 2009, or 4 percent of the authorized amount. As a result, information collection remains uneven, the databases full of gaps."€
How many more might have failed background checks if this data were better?

Shame on you, legislators. According to a recent HuffPost/YouGov poll, 75% of respondents support background checks for all gun sales, including private sales. You represent the people, not the NRA. Pass background check legislation and appropriate money for NICS improvement, now.

Originally posted to Unsung81 on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 11:13 AM PDT.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA and Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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