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Yesterday, Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) floated an idea for how private party purchases could work in a way that alleviates some of the fears people had about privacy issues, mandatory fees and other intolerable side effects of the Manchin-Toomey background check compromise. In fact, Coburn’s idea is the exact same one that I’ve had floating around in my head since this debate started and actually makes sense. Naturally, since this is a concrete proposal that involves actual common sense, gun control advocates hate it. So, what are the details? . . .

Here’s how Coburn’s idea works. A prospective buyer logs into a website run by the FBI’s NICS division and enters the information you would put on a standard ATF form 4473. The NICS database then does a background check, and returns either a “proceed” or “denied” result along with a unique code. That code, combined with the buyer’s name, can be used by the seller to verify the authenticity of the “proceed” from the background check.

Once the buyer has his background check completed, he can purchase a firearm within 30 days. No word on whether this is a one time use thing, but I’m guessing it would be good for multiple purchases.

That’s it. No required fees. No increased call volume to the already overloaded NICS call centers. No required trip to the FFL. And, most importantly for those concerned about privacy, no record of what gun was purchased or any of the other details. In fact, there’s no proof that a gun was purchased at all. Just like with normal NICS checks.

Honestly, it sounds like the best proposal we’ve heard yet. Universal background checks are a popular idea, and if implemented would give the gun control advocates much less ammunition with which to attack the second amendment (what with their abhorrence of the “gun show loophole” and all). If we have to implement them, this is actually the most agreeable method of doing so I’ve heard to date. And one that I came up with myself, so seeing that someone else had the same idea means that it might actually be “common sense.”

Before Coburn’s proposal, no “universal” background check system even came close to the level of privacy protection and convenience that this one offers. And that’s why gun control advocates don’t like it. They want their records, and they want their national gun registry. From the USA Today article, here’s Gabby Giffords’ husband:

“When there’s a crime committed, a police agency can go to a manufacturer and ask, ‘Hey, where did this gun go?'” said Mark Kelly, who founded Americans for Responsible Solutions with his wife, former Rep. Gabby Giffords. The manufacturer can point to a federally licensed dealer, who would have a paper record of the sale, “and then they can help them solve some crimes,” Kelly said.

Make no mistake: a universal gun registry is what they really want. “Universal” background checks are just the means to the end for them, the stepping stone in that direction. And Coburn’s proposal gives the public what they want while denying the gun control advocates their registry. And it’s pissing them off.

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  1. If the gun control advocates were truly in favor of “Public Safety”, they’d be doing honest work somewhere else.

    The entire philosophy of gun control rests on the premise that Americans are too stupid to disarm themselves, so we must be forced to do so slowly for our own good. A law which doesn’t fit that narrative therefore isn’t useful to the other side.

  2. Hmmm….
    We could easily take care of the anti gun groups. we can save in a database that the background check was approved seller stores it.
    If they go ask the seller after tracing the fire arm. seller gives them the code that says approved… gun control nanys stop crying and done.
    And we sneak in national reciprocity or some other goodie inside the bill when nobody is watching.

    • I’d be careful of trying to stuff this bill like a turkey. not that i really like saying this but this is the way we can fight on the same level as the antis just keep passing bills that give back or protect one thing at a time and then no one looks unreasonable.

      I like this idea too, it functions more like a loan application that you can use when ever where ever to buy or maybe not buy a gun.

    • Let’s add one clause to the bill: Anyone with a valid State-issued concealed carry permit is exempt from this additional, unnecessary background check. People with a carry permit have already been through a far more extensive check than the NICS system, so all the seller needs to do is record their name and permit number for the seller’s own records. Instant approval, sale completed at that time.

      Positive “unintended consequences”: LOTS of gun buyers get carry permits, much higher percentages of armed honest people in the country, much greater political pressure to have nationwide recognition of carry permits. Plus, civilian disarmament types have massive coronaries and strokes!

      • Thanks for heaping such an unnecessary and absurd burden on good, hard-working folks in the wide-open heartland. You know, the ones who haven’t seen the light about city life being so superior a lifestyle and all.

        Thanks also for acting as if they didn’t exist, or if they did, they hardly matter.

  3. If a person cannot be trusted with a weapon, he cannot be trusted to walk the streets. We need to work to repeal every gun law currently on the books, not giving them new ideas.

    • Have you walked the streets in a major metropolitan area? There are literally hundreds of thousands of people who have no place in polite society. Felons let out early or never convicted, child molesters, rapists, reckless drivers, etc. If every bad or irresponsible person was in jail, there would be no need for self defense. Notwithstanding the fact that felons are moving across the border every day.

      This nation has violent people outside of prison. It’s always been that way, and it will always be that way. That is why police are armed, and that is why I carry a gun virtually all of the time.

    • I don’t know about things in your neck of the woods, but there are a few high schoolers of voting age in the urban areas hereabouts who shouldn’t be trusted with a spoon.

    • More Laws coming from the Insane folks who for 200 Plus years spent more than they took in.

      Yes by all means let us let them pass more that they are exempt from.

      Do you duty and so will I.

  4. How the hell is knowing who a gun was sold to going to allow you to solve a crime. It may take you to a string of owners, but then you will probably find it was stolen. Then what? Put the last owner in jail for having their gun stolen? Talk angrily and demonize them as the last legal owner so everyone can feel good?

    • My first point to them is always: “you supported Manchin-Toomey.”

      In Manchin-Toomey, say you are in Gifford’s example – you go to the manufacturer, they give you the FFL. FFL has 4473, they go to the first buyer. Say, first buyer who sold it, sold it on the internet – points to the FFL through whom he did the background check. Police go to that FFL, 4473, second owner. Second owner, who in this hypothetical, sold it to a criminal simply says: “Sold it to a guy who I met at the range.”

      Unless owner 2 admits to:

      a) having arranged the sale online or at a gun show
      b) having a reason to believe the person he sold it to was a felon

      then no crime has been committed. If their goal is to find “straw traffickers” this way, they’ll never be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a given person just happens to sell/trade a fair number of guns which happen to fall into criminal hands.

      Nor should it. Criminals are going to continue to do illegal things – and this proposal seeks to empower gun owners to take responsibility for not putting guns in the hands of felons – something people generally support. If the antis were actually afraid of criminals getting away with stuff – they’d be imposing harsher penalties in places like Chicago, and wouldn’t be begging us to follow doggedly behind a worthless bill like Manchin-Toomey.

      • So the guy who bought the firearms, would have passed the background check anyway, and wow, there is a procedure since 1995 FOR MULTIPLE FIREARMS PURCHASES AT ONE TIME!

        b. Oh what’s this, a procedure and process that has been in place at the BATF since 1995 (do a document search, original publication date is 1995)
        c. Know what its for, reporting suspicious multiple firearm purchases, hmmmm, so a procedure is already in place for identifying straw buys, why is that eh?
        d. So this does what again to stop the bad guys, nothing!

        So unless the pawn shop failed to complete the 3310 form as required per LAW, then the law suit is going to be very hard to prove negligence!

  5. How about this for an idea. Even simpler yet. If the purchaser is a felon that would be a danger to society with a firearm, it would be easy to tell because THEY WOULD BE IN JAIL! If we as a society trust them to live freely, we have to trust them with a gun. And an automobile. And a kitchen knife.

    • If we as a society trust them to live freely, we have to trust them with a gun.

      I don’t trust violent felons to live freely. The state may choose to release them to commit more violent crimes — which they almost always do — but I will trust them when they are dead. Period. Restore their gun rights? Never.

      • See: recidivism rates
        “Among nearly 300,000 prisoners released in 15 states in 1994, 67.5% were rearrested within 3 years. A study of prisoners released in 1983 estimated 62.5%” The data are pretty old, but i suspect the numbers remain fairly constant.
        “Released prisoners with the highest rearrest rates were robbers (70.2%), burglars (74.0%), larcenists (74.6%), motor vehicle thieves (78.8%), those in prison for possessing or selling stolen property (77.4%), and those in prison for possessing, using, or selling illegal weapons (70.2%).Within 3 years, 2.5% of released rapists were arrested for another rape, and 1.2% of those who had served time for homicide were arrested for homicide.”
        The idea that a felon ‘just messed up that one time’ is a farce. It’s a pattern of behavior, a lifestyle if you will. If they committed the crime once, there is a very good chance that they will do it again.

      • Exactly, Ralph. They would not necessarily be in jail because most convicted felons never have their right to own a firearm restored, yet may be living among us. Heck, many of them go back to prison.

        Personally, I think I’m with Nick on this one. I have had my background checked twice for “carry”, about eight times through NICS, and one very tight check so I could take your kids to school for 4 years. I also own what the media would call an “arsenal”. I feel everyone who purchases a gun should have a background check including gun shows. Nick’s proposal would be something akin to a 30 day “Permit to Purchase” and it covers gun show and private sales with minimal discomfort and no record with the government. Frankly, I like it.

  6. I’ve proposed almost exactly this system, so I’ve given it a bit of thought. There has to be a component where the seller can call in or check online (both must be available; some people won’t use computers) to verify the buyer’s code.

    I’ve also been shouted down by people who insist that this would be unreasonable tyranny and would lead to a registration database. (Which shows how knee-jerk the reaction against background checks is; no firearm data is ever entered into the system under this scheme.)

    • Even this proposal is a no-go for multiple reasons.
      (1) Form 4473s include the make, model, and serial number of the firearm in the transaction. Our government does NOT need those details to indicate if someone is a violent felon. More importantly, I have absolutely NO reason whatsoever to trust that our government will not keep a record of that information.
      (2) Our government can accidentally or purposely shut down the system at any time, for any length of time, and for any reason. POOF!!! No more “legal” firearm sales.
      (3) The seller who receives the “code” has absolutely NO way to see if it is legitimate. Our government could accidentally or purposely give out incorrect codes and the seller would have absolutely NO way to prove their innocence if anyone ever accused them of an associated crime. And keep in mind that our government could actually assist a friendly foreign government to make sure they can eavesdrop and decrypt (easily) the information going to the website.
      (4) Data sent over the Internet is NOT secure. Criminals, gun grabbers, and/or foreign governments could eavesdrop on the NICS website and acquire a data bonanza. Do you really want these entities knowing who has what guns and where they live?
      (5) The seller, to avoid liability, has to keep the authorization code forever. If they ever lost that authorization code, they have absolutely NO way to prove their innocence if anyone ever accuses them of an associated crime. People lose things all the time for countless reasons.

      These are just a few of the most prominent reasons to immediately trash this latest proposal for background checks.

      • While I have not read the text, as I have not seen it released – but would happily if you would provide a link to show me the error of my ways – to rebut
        1) This would not include a 4473. The idea as I heard it includes no record keeping requirement whatsoever
        2) OK so include a provision that if the system is down for more than 18-24 hours sales can be made w/ DL or CCW permit only
        3) The government is required to prove guilt, the citizen is never required to prove innocence. Liability being on purchaser would be a no-duh provision as that is already generally the law.
        4) Agreed. But again, the only info transmitted is name, potentially address, and maybe DL #. Part of the beauty of this proposal is that the system has no way of knowing if you even went on to purchase a gun. FWIW there are already FFLs supplying this info through eNICS or something along those lines. Do you only buy private party guns?
        5) Again, how would they know you were the seller? I assume you would not give any personal info to go along with the code. In that case it would work much as it does now in many states, where if you were the last one to fill out the 4473 they may ask what happened to the gun, but you can say sold it, boat accident, etc. You have no duty to keep records of sale.

        • Nate,

          Nick Leghorn’s article above specifically says, “A prospective buyer logs into a website run by the FBI’s NICS division and enters the information you would put on a standard ATF form 4473.” Form 4473s include the make, model, and serial number of a firearm. Nick did not say anything about leaving out the make, model, and serial number. If the website for background checks only wants personally identifying information, then that is what Nick and the bill should say. As it stands, that is a liability.

          Your response that, if the system is down for 24 hours, sales can proceed via driver’s license or concealed handgun carry license. I disagree. We should not delay sales for 24 hours. There are multiple (disaster) scenarios where it would be bad to make citizens wait 24 hours to purchase a firearm, not to mention the inconvenience. And what if the system is running poorly and it takes hours to get a response? Finally, what if entities launch repeated denial-of-service attacks on the website? (For anyone who does not know, websites have limited capacity to respond to inquiries. People with malicious intent sometimes attack websites with more “attackers” than the website has capacity to handle. As a result the website basically stops working and we call that a denial-of-service attack.)

          The rest of my comments regarded enforceability. If we want an enforceable system, then everyone has to keep those records and the liabilities that I detailed still stand. The only way to eliminate those liabilities is to not require keeping records (as you suggested) and then the system is not enforceable. Such a system is then voluntary and only law abiding citizens — the people who are NOT currently straw purchasers — will follow it. The problem sellers — straw purchasers — will continue to pass background checks and purchase all the firearms they want … and then sell all they want to prohibited purchasers without background checks. And because there are no records of the activity, a straw purchaser could simply claim that all of the purchasers were okay, when in fact they were not.

  7. Honestly, the best proposal yet is to get rid of all background checks. Other than that, I see no need for change.

    We must change the dynamic. We should be pushing he other direction, not giving inch after inch after inch.

    • I’m sorry Skyler, realistically, that’s not going to happen. We need something that will pacify most of the non-gun owners without infringing on our rights and not putting us on a list. It’s just simple marketing…just “do something that appears to solve the problem”. This appears to be tougher on gun owners and an expanded way to stop illegal trade and it may pacify the 80% that want tougher checks. We already know the anti’s will not stop until they get “something”, so we give them “something”.

      On the bright side, Obozo and Holder won’t like it because it doesn’t create a list”. Pelosi, Feinstein and the rest, won’t really understand the difference. We’d just be using their own subterfuge against them.

      • ” We need something that will pacify most of the non-gun owners without infringing on our rights and not putting us on a list”

        This PERFECTLY illustrates the notion that WE must be backed-into accepting a compromise, while THEY are relieved of the responsibility of making any compromises themselves.

        Sorry. I’m having nothing to do with it. It mocks the very definition of “compromise”.

  8. Interstate transfers already need to go through an FFL. Sure, its easy to find a dealer who will look the other way. It’s also easy to find drugs or smuggle cigarettes.

    VA is not to blame for what ails NYC.

  9. I’d be fine with a no fee, no records check system. As long as we got ccw reciprocity or a few items removed from the NFA. Let’s be realistic on what “compromise” means. We get something back for giving into something they want, not we give up something slightly less than they want while getting nothing in return. Sbr, SBs, and suppressors removed from the NFA as they’ve been proven repeatedly as useful and common in military use.

    • I’d agree to “Quick NICS” in exchange for repeal of the 1986 select-fire ban and Constitutional Open Carry.

      • Overturning the Hughes amendment is seriously unlikely. The anti’s would consider “legalizing machine guns” as a massive defeat, and collectors and dealers don’t want to see $100,000,000 worth of pre-86 guns lose 99% of their value.

        • Agreed. Everyone distinguishes between semi- and select fire, including the NRA et. al. during the recent debate when they drove home again and again that “assault weapons” were NOT automatic or machine guns. It would be hard to put that genie back in the bottle.

          That said I think you could make an argument for SBRs and suppressors since they are popular, not inherently more dangerous, and can be mocked up by bad guys anyway with a hack saw or a oil can.

    • We won’t ever get anything taken off the NFA, and probably won’t ever see the Hughes Amendment go away. Not unless the SCOTUS puts a boot up some ass.

      If we offer a system like what’s proposed in the original article, I’d like to see the pro-2A concessions that were in the Cruz/Grassley bill. If we can successfully verify the background of a person in another state, there’s no reason to require the sale go through an FFL, so give us interstate private sales. Strengthen peaceable journey like the Cruz bill had proposed, so people whose trips are unexpectedly interrupted don’t end up getting arrested by anti-gun cops.

    • ^THAT gets my vote. Thanks for reminding us of the real topic.

      I was all swept away by the cleverness of the idea in the bill.

    • It won’t. But here is what it does – it gives me a tool as a seller. Right now I sell any gun I no longer want on consignment at my local shop. I do this to avoid being accused of a straw purchase if the buyer turns out to be a prohibited person. I see it as protection for me … and it will allow the Congress to say they did something without harming my rights.

        • It took 17 years of marriage with a lawyer to understand that laws don’t have “spirits” they just are. What we have to deal with is that no right is absolute – they are all regulated. Given the push to keep guns out of the hands of those who would not pass a background check (a worthy goal), this seems to be the best solution possible.

  10. This seems a bit conviluted & very dangerous. What if, at sime point, part of this process has a required field of entrance that said “Firearm Serial Number” and was mandatory in order to receive a “proceed” result, in essence giving them exactly what they want even easier to obtain?

    Even better LET US CALL THE NCIS OURSELVES, as an OPTION! Nothing would be easier to pass. Might take 30 seconds to draft!

    • One problem with letting the seller unilaterally access the NICS system is “buyer” privacy. We don’t want people running checks on their friends and enemies without that person being witting and willing. You need some way to confirm the buyer is who they say they are and want to submit to the check.

      • Also, by directly contacting the NICS the FBI, by necessity, knows you sold a gun. Seems like the privacy implications of that are considerable.

        • Not really. There is no way to be sure the check that was run resulted in a sale. Heck you and a friend could run through the system a dozen time a month if you wanted to. There is nothing here that ties the use of the system to any form of transaction.

        • The NICS system is only used for guns and explosives. If the seller is responsible for running the check the NICS will know the seller had a gun (or explosive).

          Also, as a matter of political reality there will be pressure to record seller info to prevent unauthorized use of the system by people running checks without permission.

        • Brian, I can run a background check on anyone if I know their last name, and I don’t need NICS to do it. Tools are readily available online to get a person’s criminal background, any civil suits, their estimated income, a list of any real estate they own, listed and unlisted phone numbers, names of relatives, the amount of their mortgage etc.

          A NICS check would be less intrusive.

  11. The problem is that this still impacts law abiding folk only. What they need to do is compromise by taking suppressors and/or SBRs out of the NFA for example.

  12. There is one benefit inherent in a universal background check – it gives the seller relative certainty they aren’t selling to a prohibited person. This isn’t to say it will prevent the real bad guys from getting guns, but it might help prevent good guys from being the ones unwittingly selling them (though how important legit sales are as a source of crime guns is a separate question).

  13. Anything done with the 2nd ammendment must be done as an ammendment, not to pass over the current presidents desk; lest we forget LINE ITEM VETO! We could end up with something entirely worse than our greatest nightmare could ever conceive.

    • The federal line item veto was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in Clinton v. City of New York back in 1998.

  14. This is certainly a much more reasonable system. However, sellers would need to be able to verify the “proceed” code by internet and phone and that might create some data traffic jams during gun shows. Since the “proceed” code would probably need to reference some other I.D. such as driver’s license number, why not make it a simple checkbox on each state’s driver’s license? i.e. an X in the G box means “cleared to purchase firearms?”

    • This is a good idea, though probably not politically viable. The one issue is you would need some reliable way to verify the ID wasn’t fake. Target scans your ID when you buy booze to make certain it is legit, you could do something similar with a smart phone app.

    • Good citizen one day, conviction the next. A physical document (DL) can go stale. That is why the 30 day consideration after a call in or online approval.
      I am guessing that my CCW would be revoked upon conviction so here in WI it could be used the same way by the seller to inquire to see if the CCW number was still a valid Yes/Proceed or No/Denied.

      • This is why you need a call to verify the DL is legit. If you were convicted of something the state would have the opportunity to seize your license and/or make the necessary changes in the database so that when someone ran the license it came up as no match, stopping the sale.

  15. Why are we celebrating (and brainstorming) ideas that violate Liberty? Background checks are premised on the assumption that someone else can dictate the disposition of my own property. It’s bogus.

    Stop compromising!

    • Limiting access to firearms for certain people (violent criminals and the dangerously mentally ill at a minimum) is certainly constitutional under current jurisprudence. A necessary corollary to that is the ability to control disposition of property consistent with that.

      There are good arguments against UBCs on the basis of cost/benefit but an argument based on a constitutional right to sell your property without any limitation is not going to go anywhere.

      • Whether or not something is constitutional is irrelevant to me. Until the 13th amendment, Article 4, section 2, clause 3 addressed the disposition of fugitive slaves. It was a violation of Liberty… but perfectly constitutional.

        You own yourself (your body, labor, and the product of your labor – property) and have sole authority over such. Any outside claim of ownership or influence by force is a violation of that most basic, fundamental human right.

        • So Henry, you mean to say that you have a right to sell a gun to a known fugitive? Say, someone who was convicted of murder and broke out of the joint? Because your freedom to dispose of your property is more important than your neighbor’s right not to get shot in the head? If that’s your vision for America, count me out.

        • An emotional argument. Valuing safety over freedom. Ignoring fundamental rights. Discounting human action. Advocating authoritarian principles.

          Hm, Ralph, are you sure you’re on the side of Liberty?

        • Ralph, are you sure you’re on the side of Liberty?

          Henry, are you sure you’re on the side of sanity? And I noticed that you didn’t answer my question. Want to take another crack at it?


          Didn’t think so.

        • I guess being completely consistent in my application of the self-ownership principle would seem insane to people who advocate controlling, manipulating, and dominating others.

          Yes, every person has the right to use, transfer, or dispose of his own property however he sees fit, so long as his action does not harm anyone else or infringe upon anyone else’s natural rights. No person has the authority to dictate the use of someone else’s property.

        • so long as his action does not harm anyone

          In the real world, selling a gun to a felon on the run would be considered harmful to the people he kills with it. In Bowmanville, not so much.

        • Wow, Ralph. You’re sounding more and more like a grabber with this line of “reasoning.” The act of selling a piece of property harms no one. It is the criminal act of murder, committed by the criminal, that harms the victims.

          While it may be imprudent to sell a beer to an alcoholic, it’s the alcoholic that kills while drunk driving, not the bartender.

  16. I’ve stated this before. Have a two part downloadable form, buyer calls in and gets his/her approval at no cost, puts his approval code on both parts, gives seller his half with no privacy info (SS # etc) shows seller his ID (drivers license, etc) and keeps their half for verification. No firearm information, covers both the seller and buyer!

  17. I like your idea, Nick. I think that would be good step towards a more reasonable system. Personally, I’d like to see a little box on every state’s driver’s license that could be checked if the driver is cleared for firearms purchases- but that would make everyone scream in horror for a number of reasons.

    • I think it should be the other way around. Cleared for purchase is the norm and a big red license that says VIOLENT FELON on the back if they cannot.

      Also we should roll back the system so that only violent felonies make you prohibited. Which would beg the question why anyone free from jail couldn’t buy firearms legally.

  18. Any proposal that puts the “Background Checking” under any measure of control by the Citizen is contrary to the gun prohibitionists basic concept that we, the so-called ” law-abiding” gun owning Citizens, are basically too stupid, immoral, independent-minded, criminally inclined, irresponsible, “untrained”, possibly rebellious and untrustworthy to be allowed to own firearms, so, of course it is unacceptable to them.

  19. Databases, Internet, government, “approved/denied”… first glance I think this is a good idea. Upon further contemplation, however, I see holes in it that could lead to becoming huge issues against freedom.

    The Second Amendment is my background check, as is my DD214, my spotless criminal record, and my American blood.

  20. Most all these proposals as well as Coburn’s are based on the premise of providing public access to NICS, either by phone or computer. And I think that in and of itself is a good thing. It should have nothing whatsoever to do with the firearm, and only enough to reasonably determine whether the buyer in question is or is not allowed to purchase a firearm. The biggest dangers come from potential abuses of things like mental health care information – for example, that cute little stunt they pulled up in New York.

    Of course the anti-gun statists will hate it. The harder it is to abuse the more they’ll hate it. But I say – let’s put this up for debate and show the world what kind of horses’ asses they all are. Feed ’em all the rope they want.

    • Same. It would help accomplish some actual good, giving sellers good piece of mind without having to sacrifice privacy of the buyer. I think the only thing it needs to get some real support is some written affirmation that it CAN’T and WON’T create a database (we all know they do what they want, but at least let’s make them break the rules) and some additional effort to fix the problems NICS already has, like false positives and their consistent failure to actually do something with the truly “denied” people trying to buy.

      So, it’s safe to say this will go nowhere. It’s much too sensible.

      Maybe we should act like we hate it too? That might help it get passed, if they thing the 2-A crowd hates it…..

  21. This is almost exactly the system I’ve been proposing for some time. The complaints of gun control advocates,

    The manufacturer can point to a federally licensed dealer, who would have a paper record of the sale

    Are specious, as (if I’m not mistaken), FFLs still keep a bound book of firearm sales. Currently the firearms trace system ends (or is supposed to end) at the FFL who first sells the firearm to a private person. This would be no different. The scope of the tracing system would be unchanged.

    In other words, they’re really just butthurt that it wouldn’t monumentally expand the scope of the tracing system.

  22. Here in Florida, we have a three day “cooling off period” for a handgun purchase (if you don’t have a trade-in or a CWL). The FFL dealers will not even run the background check until the three days are up, and you are ready to actually carry the firearm out of the store. Their instructions from the state are to do this, in case there has been a change in the person’s background check results in those three days.

    If the state of Florida does not trust a background check that is a mere three days stale, what makes anyone think that they would accept one that is thirty days old?

    Don’t get me wrong, I think that this idea is better than having to go to a FFL to complete a private transfer, but I hope that it doesn’t come to any of that at all.

  23. Here’s an idea.

    How about we mandate that everyone who owns or seeks to own a gun passes a DoD security clearance investigation?

    I mean, the governments never employed any spies or double agents ,so why wouldn’t we want to make sure gun owners aren’t held to the highest background check standard possible?

  24. While this bill has no drawbacks that I can see as far as gun rights are concerned, NO COMPROMISE. If the antis arent willing to give something in return for this new procedure that must be followed for me to sell my private property, then I want nothing to do with this.

  25. Another idea that puts the burden on the law-abiding. This at the same time many police departments encourage people including criminals to turn in guns No Questions Asked-double standard?

  26. Who says the government won’t data mine anyways. How do you know the person to person sale used a NICS or maybe people skip it because it is a hassle. “I know my budy excuse”. The only way to make all that happen is gun inventory, tracking, and registration. Nobody but the Anti-gunners want this.

  27. This is just bowing down to them. No compromise even in the face of Armageddon. You sir are a coward and should be ashamed.

  28. You guys have realized how easily this could be used for FFL purchases too right? We could do away with the 4473 at the dealer in the name of efficiency or level playing field or something.

  29. “Background checks” are useless, but I thank Mr. Coburn for the bill as it reveals the dishonesty of the gun grabbers.

  30. I always thought it would be a benefit if they could just make the NICS system available to average people with no legal requirement to use it. It would just be a matter of personal responsibility.

    • Yes you can. Just like taking a NICS check now, there is no guarantee a firearm was actually purchased. A database would have to be created that shows a potential seller verified the potential buyer. You enforce it by levying fines or trafficking charges on the seller. You also add an indemnity to the seller who does verify the buyer. So that they cannot be held criminally liable and cannot be sued in civil court.

  31. Untill the criminal safe zones end there is no need to discuss this further or be “reasonable” with the grabbers. This is highly unlikely though as spreading their cancer is the objective for them. We need to hang on till we can hopefully gain ground in the elections & then put this ugly sad saga behind us permantly, Randy

  32. Let’s all be realistic here – the background check BS is the item most likely to pass, and it’s a powerful weapon in the grabber’s arsenal. Crossing your arms, stamping your foot and demanding that no further laws be passed is just going to make you the sore loser when the Dems regain power in the mid 20’s (and make no mistake, they will the way things are going).

    This could wind up being a good bill – add on top of it exemptions for CC holders, and extend that to FFL’s (never do paperwork again!). Work in language that strengthens the GOPA (though I’m actually not for forced reciprocity – what we give the Federal Government the power to grant we give them the power to take away), and maybe some other NFA weakening goodies and you’ve got yourself a good bill. To ensure Barry can’t dissect it via line item Veto, pass it by 2/3’s in each house (it probably would, too). This would effectively increase our rights while also taking away that 90% number these idiots keep quoting.

  33. Let’s step up the pressure on Manchin to introduce this.

    If it meets everyone’s “public” goals (we all know the grabbers private goals), it will blowback on them when they try to move then goalposts.

    Seems like this is the common sense the grabbers have been pretending to be about.

  34. The way I see it is that this is a great idea that can be horribly implemented. For one, it will need to require a private citizen to keep a bill of sale. Otherwise it is not enforceable. So a compromise will have to be made. Like having in the database showing the seller verified the buyer. An incentive to use would be to completely remove any liability of the seller if the gun is used in a crime. Also it should exclude gifts to family members. Where it would get iffy is when it is used in a crime and you didn’t do a check. I believe in the carrot and stick. So the seller who doesn’t use the background check needs some level of punishment. But to push a trafficking charge on someone who naively sold it to a “friend” is harsh. But trafficking should given for those who intentionally buy guns to resell/give to those who cannot possibly pass a current background check (I.e straw purchasers).

  35. I’m against. Too many potential problem and the whole “…shall not be infringed” thing.

    Any potential for bad guys to use the system to get info harmful to the good guys?
    What about potential employer abuse or insurer abuse?
    What about folks out in the boonies that don’t have internet access?

    More and more I’m thinking our existing NICS system should be abolished.

  36. I really like this idea a lot. I even like the fact that it is open to the abuse of people just entering random peoples information. That would serve to make it even harder to create a registry. Obama an other anti gun people would quickly find that he aparently just went on a massive gun buying spree.

  37. NICS was originally designed as an “open” system that could be accessed by all sellers, not just FFLs. This idea was later abandoned because non-FFL sellers could not be compelled to keep records. If an FFL fails to keep records, his FFL can be suspended or revoked. Since a private party seller has no FFL, there’s no means to compel compliance unless the private buyer commits a crime — and most don’t.

    NICS has little to do with prohibited persons and everything to do with records. Which is why the Coburn proposal has no chance. Gungrabbers won’t support it since they can’t exploit it. 2A absolutists won’t support it since it involves guns. So who’s left?

    The proposal is a non-starter.

    • Lots of people are left. Lots and lots, in fact. If we assume generously 20% will oppose any background check law at all, and another 20% will oppose this on the grounds that it will not leave a registry we still have 60%. Convince 7% of the former group (and again, that’s a damn generous number) and you’ve got a veto override.

      I think that can be done, and I think it can be done with items that enhance the gun enthusiasts rights (ie, exemptions for CC holders at FFLs).

      • We’ll see, BlinkyPete, but I don’t think it could get 40 votes in the Senate, much less 51. The Dems won’t support a bill that they can’t eventually turn into a registry.

    • That picture first surfaced in early 2012, perhaps even earlier. How do you know it’s a real gun? I can’t find anything on that picture’s origins. Some of the earlier caches indicate it didn’t even come from the US, and many of the comments on the picture from around the net seem to focus on her race more than the gun.

  38. What (common sense) lipstick color makes a pig the purdiest

    What is it about “shall no be infringed” that is so difficult.

  39. And, most importantly for those concerned about privacy, no record of what gun was purchased or any of the other details. In fact, there’s no proof that a gun was purchased at all. Just like with normal NICS checks.

    Do you really trust the government, especially this administration, to not record everyone running a check as a list of “likely gun owners” to narrow down the search? There lies the problem with banning private sales without government permission.

  40. Does anyone have a link to the actual bill or any other information other than the USA Today article? I’d like to be sure that it doesn’t include the Make/model/serial# of the firearm. If not I’d support it. If so then no way.

  41. Am I missing something here about line item veto? The last I remember was that the POTUS does not have a line-item veto authority.

    • I think Clinton had it briefly, the republicans fought against it and it was repealed. Could be wrong! We never want any president to have a line item veto, if they don’t like a part of a bill, then veto the whole thing. No cherry picking, if Obama had had it, guns in National Parks would have never happened!

  42. So how often do you have the gun used to commit a crime and not the person as well? Usually don’t you just have bullets in the dead body? I imagine that if I were to shoot some one in that kind of situation I’m taking the gun with me to melt down and throw in a lake/river.

    If I sell private, it’s to blood or close friends. Everybody else, we’re taking a trip to the FFL cause I don’t know you, regardless of if it’s a pistol or a long gun (technically only long gun private sales are legal in PA). If you don’t like it, buy from someone else. I will police myself as I see fit. I do know people who have sold a handgun or two to co-workers, and this was even across state lines even. Double illegal.

    The only reason to use the “new” system is out of fear. All it prevents is accidental sales to prohibited persons, it doesn’t prevent real criminals. If your a prohibited person who’s looking to acquire a gun for an illegal purpose, I’m guessing you could give 2 F’s about the illegalities and I bet you can find guns outside of the regular joe private sale. I cannot imagine that all the guns currently in the hands of criminals passed through the hands of a law abiding citizen first (straw purchasers don’t count as law abiding). I bet a lot of private sales are to friends. I’m surprised they haven’t polled the criminals sitting in the pen to see where they get their guns from. It’s not like those guys are busy.

    If we have to give in to something like a mandatory system, then I want something in return and the dereg of NFA is a good place to start.

    I’m also a big fan of 2 felony strikes against you and we put you down.

  43. I don’t have the time or desire to scan through 100 comments to see if this was already discussed, but could Coburn’s suggested solution be used to allow purchases over the internet without having to go to an FFL? If you (as a buyer) can be background checked via this process, and can provide that validation to the seller, then I’d love to see the seller be able to ship right to my door.

  44. Could Coburn’s suggested solution be used to allow purchases over the internet without having to go to an FFL? If you (as a buyer) can be background checked via this process, and can provide that validation to the seller, then I’d love to see the seller be able to ship right to my door.

  45. i have a better idea. how about only requiring a single form of ID: a genuine U.S. birth certificate. once you get one you can buy, sell, trade, carry, modify, manufacture, and possess any kind of conventional weapon both military and civilian, anywhere in the country, open or concealed, for the rest of your life.

    the only restrictions would be if you are an illegal immigrant, in prison, on parole, or have a mental condition who’s known symptoms include bouts of violence.

  46. I would go one step further and allow this instant check system to be used for any purpose, for example doing a background check on a potential babysitter.

    Advantage: by mixing gun checks with non-gun checks it makes the database completely unusable for identifying potential gun owners.

  47. I sure wish this bill would get introduced, I would like to see how many Democrats suddenly start blocking a vote on background checks.

    Please keep us informed on the status of this bill. I can’t find any information on its status.


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