Senate also Debates Gun Violence Bills
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 6, 2017 — As mourners gather today for a national vigil remembering the victims of gun violence, the U.S. House of Representatives passed NRA-backed legislation making it easier for felons, domestic abusers, and untrained citizens to carry loaded, hidden guns anywhere in the nation. Brady Co-President Kris Brown reacted to the vote noting, "In the aftermath of two of America's deadliest mass shootings, Congress should be voting to keep guns out of dangerous hands by supporting, strengthening, and expanding our nation's background check system. Instead, today they are voting on a bill that makes it easier for dangerous people to carry loaded guns in our communities."
The "Arm Anyone" concealed carry bill requires all states to recognize a permit to carry a concealed gun from any other state, regardless of how weak the issuing state's laws are. In Florida, a state with notoriously weak concealed carry laws, 1,400 concealed carry permit holders were found to be felons.
According to Brady Co-President Avery Gardiner, "Within its first 100 days, this Congress passed legislation to stop the Social Security Administration from putting the names of people who, under existing federal law, are not allowed to buy guns, into the database that powers our background check system for gun purchases. The House of Representatives then voted to force the Veterans' Administration to remove more than 174,000 potentially dangerous people from that system. And the Department of Justice changed how it defines fugitives from justice, removing the names of 500,000 more people from the background check system. Members of Congress -- take note. The voters will hold you accountable for making it easier for dangerous people to carry guns in America."
As House members voted on Arm Anyone, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee met today to discuss ways to improve the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and address a bill to ban bump stock accessories. The Fix NICS Act, introduced by Senators John Cornyn (R-Tex) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn), seeks to strengthen the reporting of prohibited purchasers, including domestic abusers, by state and federal agencies into our nation’s background check system. In regard to the bill, Kris Brown said, "It is critical that we pass comprehensive reform of our Brady background check system that addresses both improved reporting of names and also closes the loopholes that today allow at least 1 in 5 guns to be purchased without a background check".
Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.