Conn. to Ban Gun Sales to People on Terrorism Watch Lists

'Simple common sense'
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 10, 2015 6:31 PM CST
Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy announced Thursday he would sign an executive order to keep people on federal watch lists from legally purchasing guns in his state.   (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

(Newser) – The governor of Connecticut announced Thursday he would sign an executive order to keep anyone on federal watch lists from legally purchasing guns, the Hartford Courant reports. "If you can't fly without clearing government watch lists, you shouldn't be able to buy a gun," Reuters quotes Dannel Malloy. The executive order would apply to people on the federal no-fly list as well as a list of people with suspected terrorist connections, the Courant reports. Malloy says he thinks allowing people on those lists to purchase weapons is more dangerous than letting Syrian refugees into the country. In addition, the order would revoke current gun permits from anyone found to be on the lists, according to Reuters.

Malloy cited FBI statistics that showed people on watch lists tried to buy guns and explosives more than 2,200 times between 2004 and 2014 and succeeded more than 90% of the time, the New York Times reports. He calls the order "simple common sense," according to the Courant. The move is creating strange bedfellows, as it's opposed by both the NRA and ACLU. Earlier this month, Democrats failed to pass a similar bill—modeled on an old George W. Bush proposal—at the national level. "If Congress will not act, we in the states will,'' Malloy says. The Times reports it's unclear how Connecticut would get access to the watch lists. And Reuters notes the executive order would still require federal approval. (Read more Connecticut stories.)

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