Senators Gillibrand, Schumer join colleagues to reintroduce legislation to expand background checks on gun sales
Thursday, January 10, 2019 - 5:58 am

New York U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles “Chuck” Schumer joined 39 of their Senate colleagues Tuesday to reintroduce the Background Check Expansion Act.

The legislation would expand federal background checks to all gun sales, including in St. Lawrence County.

Under current law, not all gun sellers are required to conduct a background check prior to transferring a firearm and as many as a quarter of all gun sales in the United States may occur without a background check. This legislation would require unlicensed and private sellers to conduct background checks.

“Gun violence is destroying families and tearing apart communities all over our country on a daily basis, yet Congress continues to sit on its hands and do nothing to stop this crisis. We must solve this problem now,” said Senator Gillibrand. “One of the most effective ways to help stop gun violence is to ensure that dangerous and violent people don’t get their hands on these weapons in the first place, and that’s why 97 percent of Americans support universal background checks. This is an easy and commonsense solution to a problem that affects all of us. I am proud to join my colleagues in reintroducing this urgently needed bill to the Senate, and I urge my colleagues to move quickly to pass it into law.”

This legislation would require background checks for the sale or transfer of all firearms, including unlicensed sellers who sell online, at gun shows, or from their home. The exceptions to the Background Check Expansion Act include transfers between law enforcement officers, temporarily loaning firearms for hunting or sporting events, providing firearms as gifts to immediate family members, transferring a firearm as part of an inheritance, or temporarily transferring a firearm for immediate self-defense.

In addition to Gillibrand and Schumer, the Background Check Expansion Act is cosponsored by 38 other Democratic senators and independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.