U.S. Democrat Senator Tim Kaine from Virginia referenced the recent on-air double murder by Bryce Williams as evidence that our current gun control laws don’t work to stem senseless gun violence. He then proposed more gun control laws that would effectively ban private sales and transfers of guns and that also won’t work to stem senseless gun violence.
His proposed law, the Responsible Transfer of Firearms Act, would make the seller of any firearm criminally liable should he not take the proper steps to ensure that his buyer is clean. The law pertains to private sales and would potentially ban private sales and transfers of guns.
Under current law, only Federal Firearm Licensees (FFLs) are allowed to access the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). This would mean that if a private resident wants to sell to another private resident, and both of them live in the same state, there would be no way for that seller to access NICS on his own. If he sold or transferred a gun to that person without running a background check, he would be held criminally liable, should the buyer end up misusing the gun, or should the police find out. The only solution then, in order to be compliant with the proposed law, would be to make the sale or transfer through an FFL, who would charge fees to do so, including the background check fee. This means that if you want to give your shotgun to your son, you’d have to go through an FFL to do it, or else face criminal charges. Private sales and transfers would be illegal.
Writing for The Federalist, Sean Davis made this comparison:
“Kaine’s gun control proposal is akin to an anti-speeding law that for some reason prohibited drivers from using speedometers to gauge their speeds.”
Here’s Senator Kaine’s “fact sheet” on his proposed law:
Kaine referenced Bryce Williams’ double murder as evidence that our gun laws aren’t working. I’d agree with him there. But his proposed legislation to ban private sales of firearms wouldn’t work either.