Their letter outlines five key steps to ensure background checks don’t fall through the cracks, records are appropriately maintained, safe home storage emphasized
[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), today led thirteen of their colleagues in calling for strengthening background checks amidst a massive increase in gun sales during the coronavirus emergency. In a letter sent today to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Bureau for Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF), the Senators express serious concerns that the surge in gun sales is overwhelming the National Instant Criminal Background System (NICS), and that firearms dealers, also known as federal firearms licensees (FFLs), need guidance on how to effectively handle the deluge during the health emergency.
“Even absent a public health emergency, law enforcement does not always have enough time to accurately determine pre-sale whether someone is a prohibited buyer,” write the Senators in their letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray and ATF Acting Director Regina Lombardo. “We fear that a drastic increase in gun sales in response to the coronavirus pandemic could overwhelm NICS and allow prohibited individuals to obtain firearms through ‘default proceeds’. We believe it is essential that your agencies issues guidance to FFLs about their ongoing responsibilities under the law and the tools with which the can safely operate their businesses during this unprecedented public health emergency.”
A copy of the letter can be found HERE.
The Senators outline five key steps for the FBI and ATF to take immediately to ensure public safety:
Other Senators signing the letter include Senators Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Patty Murray (D-Wash,), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.).