Waiting Period, Licensing Didn't Make It Into Gun Legislation

Senate package is a far cry from what many Democrats wanted, but they say it's a start
By Mike L. Ford,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 14, 2022 1:36 PM CDT
Waiting Period, Licensing Didn't Make It Into Gun Legislation
   (Getty - SolidMaks)

On Sunday, a bipartisan group of senators said they struck an "agreement on principle" for a package of gun-related and safety legislation. It currently has filibuster-proof support from the 10 GOP senators who helped cobble it together, but that could change as lawmakers hustle to create an actual bill before the congressional recess in two weeks, according to CNN. Proposals include "significant funding" to help states create or improve red flag laws and "major investments to increase access to mental health and suicide prevention" and other resources aimed at identifying and treating potential mass shooters.

Another measure involves closing the "boyfriend loophole," which allows those convicted of violence against an unmarried partner to own a gun. Lawmakers also propose a more thorough review process for prospective gun buyers under age 21, including a required state-level search for disqualifying mental health or juvenile records. And there is talk of requiring more firearm sellers to register as Federally Licensed Firearm dealers, thus requiring them to conduct background checks. The package also includes money "to help institute safety measures in and around primary and secondary schools," a popular proposal with Republicans.

Per Fox News, proposals for a mandatory waiting period on all gun purchases, universal background checks, safe gun-storage requirements, and a license requirement for assault rifles all were rejected. The Hill reports that senators do want to crack down on straw purchases, the practice of buying a gun for someone else; existing laws are hard to enforce, but it's not yet clear how this will be addressed in new legislation. As with other proposals, gun-control advocates say it's all better than nothing. The Washington Post editorial board says that it would be "the most significant piece of gun-safety legislation in more than 25 years," and that the fact that Democrats and Republicans were able to agree on anything at all is "a hopeful sign our government is not completely broken." (More gun control stories.)

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