More Than 100 House Members Join Bipartisan Legislation to Combat Gun Trafficking
Washington, D.C. —Today, Reps. Patrick Meehan (R-PA), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Scott Rigell (R-VA), and Elijah Cummings (D-MD) announced that more than 100 Members of the House of Representatives from both political parties have signed on as co-sponsors of H.R. 452, The Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2013.
“We are encouraged by the bipartisan and growing support from our colleagues who have joined us in supporting this common-sense measure to combat gun trafficking,” said Meehan, Maloney, Rigell, and Cummings in a joint statement. “Congress needs to act now to pass this bipartisan legislation and send it directly to the President’s desk.”
After the bill was introduced on February 5, 2013, it quickly began to gain support from both Democrats and Republicans. The bill would make firearms trafficking a federal crime for the first time and impose stronger penalties for “straw purchasers” who buy guns for convicted felons and others who are prohibited from buying guns on their own.
The NRA has also joined the growing mass of supporters calling for stronger gun trafficking laws. This weekend on NBC's Meet The Press, National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre told host David Gregory: "We're looking at laws that beef up the penalties on straw purchases and illegal trafficking, which we want prosecuted."
The legislation has the strong support of law enforcement organizations and others because it is a critical step to stopping the flow of guns into the hands of criminals while protecting the rights of law abiding gun owners.
Earlier this month at a bipartisan forum, victims of gun trafficking crimes and law enforcement officials charged with combating them urged Congress to pass this bill to help keep guns out of the hands of criminals.
The legislation currently has more than 100 cosponsors, including Reps. Peter King (R-NY), John Conyers (D-MI), Mike Thompson (D-CA), and Michael Fitzpatrick (R-PA).
On March 7, 2013, the Senate Judiciary Committee adopted similar legislation on a bipartisan basis.
For more information on the bill, please click here.