(courtesy gunownersofmaine.org)
The Secretary of State in Maine has approved the following petition for the elimination of private sales of firearms in the Pine Tree State. Of course that’s not what it’s proponents are saying, but under the proposed law the federal government would have to recognize all firearms sales before any sale would be legal. It would require that the State keep records on the firearm and the purchaser, and turn over such records to the federal government. This is the elimination of private sales; once the transaction must be pre-approved by the government and records kept, the sale is no longer private. Check out the wording here, or make the jump for the text . . .

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 25 MRSA §2014 is enacted to read:

§2014. Background checks for firearms sales and transfers

1. Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms have the following
meanings.

A. “Corrections officer” has the same meaning as in section 2801-A, subsection 2.

B. “Family member” means husband, wife, domestic partner, parent by blood, parent by adoption, child by blood, child by adoption, sibling by blood, sibling by adoption, grandparent, grandchild, niece, nephew, aunt, uncle, first cousin, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, stepsister, half brother, half sister or intimate partner.

C. “Firearm” has the same meaning as in Title 17-A, section 2, subsection 12-A.

D. “Firearm dealer” means a person who holds any federal firearms license under 18 United States Code, Section 923(a) (2015).

E. “Intimate partners” means individuals in a dating relationship who are currently living with each other.

F. “Law enforcement agency” has the same meaning as in section 3701, subsection 1.

G. “Law enforcement officer” has the same meaning as in section 3701, subsection 3.

H. “Person” means an individual, corporation, partnership, firm, trust, organization or other legal entity.

I. “Sell” has the same meaning as in Title 17-A, section 554-A, subsection 1, paragraph C.

J. “Transfer” has the same meaning as in Title 17-A, section 554-A, subsection 1, paragraph A.

K. “Transferee” means a person who receives or intends to receive a firearm in a sale or transfer.

L. “Transferor” means a person who delivers or intends to deliver a firearm in a sale or transfer.

M. “Unlicensed person” means any person who is not a firearm dealer under this section.

2. Background checks required for all sales and transfers. Except as provided in subsection 8, each sale or transfer of a firearm occurring in whole or in part in this State between unlicensed persons must be preceded by a background check on the transferee and an unlicensed person may not sell or transfer a firearm and an unlicensed person may not receive a firearm without complying with the process described in this section.

3. Background check conducted by firearm dealer. When both parties to a prospective sale or transfer of a firearm are unlicensed persons, the transferor and transferee shall meet jointly at a firearm dealer and request that the firearm dealer facilitate the sale or transfer. A firearm dealer who agrees to facilitate a sale or transfer under this section shall process the sale or transfer as though selling or transferring the firearm from its own inventory to the transferee, complying with all requirements of federal and state law that would apply if it were making such a sale or transfer, including all background check and record-keeping requirements.

4. No sale or transfer if failed background check.
Neither a firearm dealer nor a transferor may deliver any firearm to a transferee if the results of the background check pursuant to subsection 3 indicate that the transferee is disqualified to possess firearms under state or federal law.

5. Leaving dealer with firearm.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law:

A. This section does not prevent the transferor from removing the firearm from the premises of the firearm dealer while a background check is being conducted pursuant to subsection 3. Before the transferor sells or transfers the firearm to the transferee, the parties must return to the firearm dealer, who shall take possession of the firearm in order to complete the sale or transfer; and

B. This section does not prevent the transferor from removing the firearm from the premises of the firearm dealer if the results of the background check pursuant to subsection 3 indicate that the transferee is disqualified to possess firearms under state or federal law.

6. Reasonable fee. A firearm dealer who agrees to facilitate a sale or transfer
pursuant to this section may charge a reasonable fee for services rendered.

7. Completion of forms. A transferor and a transferee must each complete, sign and submit all federal and state forms necessary to process the background check and otherwise complete the sale or transfer pursuant to this section.

8. Exceptions. The provisions of this section apply to the transfer or sale of a
firearm between unlicensed persons except if:

A. The sale or transfer is between family members;

B. The firearm is a curio or relic, as defined in 27 Code of Federal Regulations, Section 478.11 (2015), and the sale or transfer is between collectors of firearms as curios or relics, as defined by 18 United States Code, Section 921(a)(13) (2015), who both have in their possession a valid collector of curios and relics license issued by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives;

C. The sale or transfer is of an antique firearm, as defined in 18 United States Code, Section 921(a)(16) (2015);

D. The transfer is temporary and is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm, and:

(1) The transfer lasts only as long as necessary to prevent such threat; and

     (2) The transferor has no reason to believe that the transferee is disqualified to possess firearms under state or federal law and has no reason to believe that the transferee intends to use the firearm in the commission of a crime;

E. Either the transferor or the transferee is a law enforcement agency or the Department of Corrections or is, to the extent the person is acting within the course of the person’s employment or official duties, a peace officer, a law enforcement officer, a corrections officer, a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or the National Guard or the Reserves of the United States Armed Forces, a federal law enforcement officer or a person licensed as a security guard or employed by a contract security company or proprietary security organization under Title 32, chapter 93;

F. The transfer is temporary, the transferor has no reason to believe that the
transferee intends to use the firearm in the commission of a crime and the transfer and the transferee’s possession of the firearm take place exclusively:

(1) At an established shooting range authorized by the governing body of the jurisdiction in which such range is located or, if no such authorization is required, operated consistently with local law in such jurisdiction;

(2) At a lawfully organized competition involving the use of a firearm or for participation in or practice for a performance by an organized group that uses firearms as a part of the performance;

(3) While the transferee is hunting or trapping if such activity is legal in all places where the transferee possesses the firearm and the transferee holds any license or permit required for such activity; or

(4) In the actual presence of the transferor

Any transfer allowed by this paragraph is permitted only if the transferor has no reason to believe that the transferee is disqualified to possess firearms under state or federal law or, if the transferee is under 18 years of age and is receiving the firearm under direct supervision and control of an adult, that such adult is disqualified to possess firearms under state or federal law; or

G. The transfer occurs by operation of law upon the death of a person for whom the transferee is an executor, administrator, trustee or personal representative of an estate or a trust created in a will.

9. Violations. Any person who knowingly delivers or receives a firearm without
complying with this section commits

A. For a first conviction involving the sale or transfer of one or more firearms, a
Class D crime; and

B. For a 2nd or subsequent conviction involving the sale or transfer of one or more firearms, a Class C crime.

SUMMARY

This initiated bill requires a background check before a firearm sale or transfer
between individuals not licensed as firearm dealers. If neither party to a sale or transfer has a federal firearms license, the parties meet at a licensed firearm dealer, who conducts a background check on the transferee and completes the sale or transfer as though selling or transferring from the dealer’s own inventory. Exceptions to the background check requirement are made for transfers between family members, while the parties are hunting or sport shooting, for emergency self-defense, in the presence of the transferor and in other circumstances.

©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.     Link to Gun Watch

58 Responses to Maine Secretary of State Unveils Petition to Eliminate Private Firearm Sales (a.k.a., Universal Background Checks)

  1. Didn’t see anything in the fancy language that compels the criminals to comply.

    I also didn’t see any way for them to prove I just sold this gun to John for cash.

    • John’s an undercover ATF agent. You’re boned.

      I did notice that the language appears identical in sections to that of I-594 here in Washington (which nobody follows or enforces). What are the odds that these two local, grassroots organizations would use the exact same wording like that…

      • The odds are 100%. This was absolutely written by the same Bloomburg funded, MDA and Everytown organized group that was in charge of that propaganda campaign. The difference is, here in Maine, we REALLY don’t like people from away telling us what to do. They are spending big money to push this here already and we are working hard to get the word out that this is funded by Flatlanders. It will end up being a huge money sink for Bloomburg in the end.

      • It’s a proposed state law, ATF has nothing to do with it. OTOH, Maine is such a low-crime state the local LE may indeed have plenty of time to play that kind of game if they are interested–which I can’t really see, but who knows? Of course, if you are only selling to someone you know that eliminates that problem.

      • “I did notice that the language appears identical in sections to that of I-594 here in Washington…”

        Unlike WA, there is a carve out for C&R…PROVIDED…that both parties have 03 FFL.

        So it’s not much of a carve out.

  2. Edit function won’t work…

    onto my comment above: Isn’t that the liberal thing anyway, that we’re all family?

  3. They have always wanted the population disarmed. An armed population can not be ruled like slaves or serfs. An armed population tells the rules what to do, not the other way around.

  4. very pro-gun Maine state’er needs to send Democrat Secretary of State for Maine, Matthew Dunlap, the message that this is unconstitutional under Maine’s constitution:

    “Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms and this right shall NEVER be questioned.” [EMPHASIS added]

    as his proposed statute most assuredly brings that RKBA “into question.”

  5. We are all God’s children. If they can break Constitutional law over philosophical differences can we not use philosophical differences to obey there laws.
    And if it’s as dangerous as they say aren’t we all in imminent danger.

  6. Every pro-gun Maine state’er needs to send Democrat Secretary of State for Maine, Matthew Dunlap, the message that this is unconstitutional under Maine’s constitution:

    “Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms and this right shall NEVER be questioned.” [EMPHASIS added]

    as his proposed statute most assuredly brings that RKBA “into question.”

  7. “Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms and this right shall NEVER be questioned.”
    So filling out a Form 4473… It has questions on it, that require answering.

    Also, I wonder what the “reasonable fee” will be. They are all over the board up here now.
    A well known store in Portland charges $100.00 if you aren’t buying from them.

    • ANY fee, whether considered “reasonable” or not, is a poll tax. How in the world can they not see and understand this?

      • “They” see it and understand it fully and they do not care.

        The added expense isn’t a bug, it is a feature. It is one more barrier to firearm culture. That is by design.

  8. I personally don’t see the big deal. My only concern would be, if you give the government an inch, they’ll try to take a mile. For that reason alone, I don’t want any new laws on the books. Start enforcing the laws we have.

    • “I personally don’t see the big deal.”

      It’s gun registration.

      With the data collected, they will have a list of who owns guns and the serial numbers of the guns themselves.

      When they outlaw guns, they will know right where to go to confiscate them.

      As Crazy Old Uncle Joe Biden once said, “It’s a big fvcking deal!”.

    • Nick,

      It is a big deal. If you want to sell a firearm to a friend and your nearest Federal Firearms Licensee is 30 miles away, you are looking at more than an hour drive round trip, another 15 to 30 minutes at the Federal Firearms Licensee, the mileage/fuel expense of the drive, and whatever fee (could easily be on the order of $50) the Federal Firearms Licensee charges to process the transfer.

    • Nick, it’s a huge deal. Notice this is not just about sales but all “transfers”. If I give my son or daughter one of my guns as a gift, suddenly that becomes a federal issue.

      What about when I pass away? By rights, all my firearms (of signifigant monetary value) should be the property of my dear sweetheart wife. But, did I legally transfer them to her? She would need to apply for (and pay for) a background check merely to maintain possession of what was ours all along. It is about eventually eliminating private firearms possession completely.

      What if I go to the range with a buddy and we put a few rounds downrange with each other’s guns to try them out? Was that an illegal transfer? Can Mr. ATF or local cop now bring us up on charges for firearms trafficking?

      Here in KY we have it great (for now) as far as firearms freedom is concerned. Not so much elsewhere. It is a big deal.

      • Actually the situations you propose are exempted: “A. The sale or transfer is between family members”. Also sharing the weapon at the range is also listed, as well as the death of a family member. Sharing the weapon in presence of the owner is exempted as well.
        Existing law is the way to go for me but, before you argue further you should read the whole article.

        • Jeff, is it really exempted? Or just for now?

          The endgame is to bring about full registration to facilitate full confiscation. Guns have serial numbers and those numbers will be traced back to the last person who did a BGC.

          The exemptions may be in print but they are meaningless. Yes, I read the full law. I also read between the lines.

  9. This keeps us safe how? I still want an anti to walk me through their logic how registration of firearms magically leads to a safer society. They haven’t been able to do it yet. They usually get pretty stumped and sit there for a second with a dumb look on their face, or no follow up comment to my question.

    • Well see, when Johnnie Gangbanger goes to buy some chrome for under the sweater, he’ll have to run the black market purchase through a local FFL now. If he’s a felon he’ll just be out of luck. Because the law says so!

  10. “D. The transfer is temporary and is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm, and:

    (1) The transfer lasts only as long as necessary to prevent such threat”

    Seeing as how the intent of the 2A is eternal preparedness against tyrannical government, any private transfer is still valid under this law, since the threat of tyrannical government lasts as long as the nation has and will exist. Guess that settles that.

    That being said, welcome to modern America, where politicians seeking to rob innocent people of legal rights is an everyday occurrence.

  11. Serious violation to the 4th A. I have the right to protect myself and if you don’t like it tough $hit.
    The 2nd Amendment was put into the Constitution so the people could protect themselves from a corrupt government. No double standards put DC politicians on Obamacare and SS.Thanks for your support and vote.Pass the word. mrpresident2016.com

  12. Looks much like what I-594 did in WA ST. Hello registration, goodbye liberty and 2A. Thank-you Bloomberg, Gates, Hanouer, Allen, NOT.

  13. WTF? Didn’t maine just pass constitutional carry? Usually a state goes one way (good) or the other way (bad). What the heck is going on with maine? Where did this come from?

    Can someone explain?

    • We did just pass Constitutional Carry. Maine is VERY pro-gun outside of the Portland enclave. This will not pass up here, no matter how much money Bloomburg throws at it. Just like the referendums on restricting Bear Hunting that come out of Boston every year do.

      We don’t take kindly to folks from away trying to tell us what to do.

    • This is a “citizen initiative”. Parents of a women who who was shot and subsequently died a month later due to a pulmonary embolism are the face of this effort. Funding by Moms Demand Victims and, of course, Michael Bloomberg. They are paying people $15/hr to collect the required signatures (appx 61,000) provided they meet the hourly quota of 10.

      Since our legislature failed to reform the initiative process to ensure that a proportional number of signatures come from both districts all they will really have to do is collect the vast majority of signatures from what we call Northern Massachusetts.

      As far as the Secretary of State goes…this is part of his job regardless of party affiliation. This fight will be much like our bear referendum last year, expensive. Hopefully with the same result.

      • Just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to explain! It makes me feel a lot better that this is carpet-bagging/astro-turfing. Glad to hear the specifics- makes me feel a lot better about Maine.

  14. Its called NULLIFICATION THROUGH DISOBEDIENCE. Rosa Parks is a hero for nullifying unjust laws. However, this rogue govt will turn pro Consitutionalists into enemies of the state for the same behavior. This govt wants Civil War2, they are pushing it.

  15. Oh boy, this will sure close that bad ol evil gun show loophole, where old white guys who do not have the best interests of the global village in mind, can buy machine guns over the internet!

  16. Eventually, all the “Blue” States will adopt this kind of Legislation. While they may do little to actively enforce such a law, it can make a great add-on of criminal charges when you blunder into their legal grasp for something else. Criminals will ignore it, as would be expected. We have seen time and again that the “crazies” manage to buy their guns legally from licensed dealers, so it won’t stop them. In the end, these kinds of laws only affect law-abiding Citizens by forcing them to surrender their rights, or become a criminal by disobeying legislated fiat.

  17. This proposal for Universal Background Checks will be vigorously challenged in Maine.

    Below is a “cliff notes” list of reasons to OPPOSE this proposal (an even 10 in no particular order):

    1. Practically all the recent mass killers either passed a background check and/or stole the weapons they used. The background checks proved to be useless.
    2. We can be assured that the criminal element will “universally” not subject themselves to these background checks, and yet still obtain whatever weapons they want.
    3. The Universal Background Checks can only be implemented with Universal Gun Registration (which history shows ultimately leads to Universal Gun Confiscation).
    4. This proposal is deceptively “sold” (and polled) as coming into play during the PURCHASE (i.e. change of ownership) of a firearm, however, the actual details of the proposal also affects the POSSESSION of firearms (e.g. loaning a gun to a hunting buddy for hunting season).
    5. There is something inherently wrong in requiring citizens to obtain prior permission from the government before exercising U.S. Constitutional Rights
    6. The UBC proposal is being driving and financed by out-of-state interests (read: Bloomberg). As a general rule, Mainers DO NOT appreciate being told how to live their lives by outsiders.
    7. The UBC proposal is in violation of the Maine State Constitution; “Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms and this right shall NEVER be questioned”.
    8. Notwithstanding the utter uselessness and unconstitutionality of this proposal, mandating that RURAL citizens (most of Maine) meet up at a Federal Firearm Dealer to get approval for a firearms transfer is an unfair burden on the exercise of their 2nd Amendment civil rights.
    9. Maine is one of the safest states in the nation, there is certainly no need for additional criminal checks on the citizenry.
    10. This proposal is just another burdensome regulatory requirement (on top of numerous others). Instead, we need to be reducing regulations as Maine successfully did with Constitutional Carry.

    Final Note: This whole issue reminds me of the 1994 “Assault Weapons Ban” whereby the general public’s confusion between full-auto and semi-auto was used to ban military-style rifles with certain cosmetic features (this law “sun-setted” 10 years later in 2004). One can only hope that the Maine people will be smart enough not to fall for this UBC deception.

  18. I joined Gun Owners of Maine as soon as I saw this, and challenged all my friends on Facebook to do the same. We need to crush this so brutally that the backers think twice about trying it again anytime soon. We shadow the petition circulators, find out if they are residents or not, cross-check every single signature, find out who is financing this and see how we can make them pay a price.
    In a way, the backers are doing us a small favor, since we will have a list of the people who wish us disarmed.

  19. If someone where to sign the petition with false info, would it void all the names on that particular sheet? I had a chance to sign a petition once, different one, but being out of state, I couldn’t. You could lie, but that would be wrong haha. Yeah, of course I’m registered!

    • The sheet invalidation issue has, IIRC, been decided differently in different places. I recall a judge ordering a state to individually verify every single signature and count them when the sec of state disqualified an initiative using statistical methods and someone challenged that, but that was on the West coast, not New England.

  20. I hope people notice this is pretty similar to the I-594 bill that passed in Washington. Similar as in “cut and paste.”

    I’ve said before that they Anti’s have changed fronts. They know they have lost the national case, so now are going State by State. Every one they get will build momentum and if they get enough mass they will be successful in even gun friendly States.

    Others are right in that this both eliminates private transfers and creates registration. It does more, too. It isolates and divides gun owners. They may not be able to beat an united front, but here they can pour massive resources into small victories and hope to get their objectives that way.

    If gun owners, activists, NRA, NSSF, etc. won’t fight at this front, we will lose in the long run through a thousand cuts.

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