“It’s coming back,” said Virginia Senator Joe Manchin Tuesday about his bipartisan bill to expand background checks on gun sales, a bill which failed to pass on its first run through the Senate last month. [more]
Gun Enthusiast Gather at Annual NRA Convention
CBS News – About 70,000 National Rifle Association members gathered at the group’s annual convention, where guns and gear were displayed on a seven acre center. The NRA opposes any restrictions on gun ownership as well as President Barack Obama’s re-election.
The NRA’s has placed it upon themselves to increase the portability of guns for its 4 million members. They have been lobbying Congress to pass a new law that would allow “concealed carry” permits to transport their guns into every state that allows qualified gun owners to carry concealed firearms.
The concealed carry reciprocity bill passed the House of Representatives last year. Senate sponsors are pushing for a vote in the coming weeks.
A 2002 study by the Violence Policy Center found in the first five years after Texas allowed concealed weapons, between 1996 and 2001, such permit holders were arrested for 5,314 crimes.
A 2007 investigation by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel found more than 1,700 people with felony convictions, outstanding arrest warrants, and domestic violence injunctions were among those cleared for concealed weapon permits in Florida in the first half of 2006.
Outside the convention hall, there were voices challenging NRA views, including three survivors of last year’s mass shooting in Tucson that killed six people, including nine-year-old Christina Green, and wounded 13 others, including former U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords at her “Congress On Your Corner” event outside a supermarket.
Patricia Maisch, a Giffords constituent who grabbed a bullet-filled magazine from Loughner before he could reload his semi-automatic handgun, said the NRA stands in the way of closing key loopholes on background checks for gun buyers.
About 40 percent of U.S. gun sales, such as at gun shows or between private individuals, escape the checks required of licensed gun dealers, according to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and Mayors Against Illegal Guns.