Gun control legislation avoided a filibuster in the Senate this week, beginning debate on the first comprehensive gun regulation overhaul in almost a decade. The Nation digs into the various provisions in that bill and what is likely to change over the course of the debate.
“The marquee feature of this gun control package is to require a background check for virtually every gun transaction: commercial, private, online, or in person, with very narrow exceptions… Republican Senator Pat Toomey and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin… agreed to allow record keeping, and to expand background checks to gun shows, online purchases, and any other commercial sale that advertises. It appears they will propose language that widens exemptions for personal and family sales, however, to go far beyond the narrow restrictions described above.”
“The Hadiya Pendleton and Nyasia Pryear-Yard Anti-Straw Purchasing and Firearms Trafficking provisions of this bill would make it a felony to be a straw purchaser, meaning that a person buys or even conspires to buy a firearm for someone other than him or herself who is prohibited from owning it. It would subject that person to up to 15 years in prison, or as high as 25 years… Similarly, gun traffickers face much tougher penalties under the legislation.”
“If enacted, the bill would re-authorize through 2023 a Justice Department program that expired in 2009, which gave school districts grants to develop security plans. It would provide $40 million annually for school districts to develop and implement safety plans, up from $30 million the last time the program existed.”