U.S. Reps. Mike Thompson (D-CA) and Pete King (R-NY) announced Tuesday, April 30th, that more than 100 Representatives have co-sponsored H.R. 1565, a bipartisan compromise to expand the current background check system to all commercial sales. H.R. 1565 expands the existing background check system to cover all commercial firearm sales, including those at gun shows, over the internet or in classified ads. To protect the second amendment rights of responsible gun owners, the bill provides reasonable exceptions for family and friend transfers and allows active military personnel to buy guns in the state they are stationed. Furthermore, it lets gun owners use a state concealed carry permit issued within the last five years in lieu of a background check and permits interstate handgun sales from licensed dealers. The legislation also bans the government from creating a federal registry and makes the misuse of records a felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Thompson and King join original co-authors PA republicans Mike Fitzpatrick and Pat Meehan of Pennsylvania, as well as Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and Peter Defazio (D-OR).
As Thompson and King said, “We won’t take ‘no’ for an answer when it comes to passing commonsense laws that keep guns from criminals, terrorist and the dangerously mentally ill. This debate isn’t over. The American people deserve for this bill to be signed into law.” Here at CeasefirePA, we applaud the efforts of all Congressional proponents of H.R. 1565, especially Representatives Fitzpatrick and Meehan and urge all members of the PA delegation to sign on.