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Plum’s Gun Show Background Check Bill Dies in Committee

by Karen Goff January 30, 2015 at 9:00 am 7 Comments

Del. Ken Plum/File photoDel. Ken Plum’s (D-Reston) bill to require a background check for all gun purchases was defeated in a House subcommittee at the Virginia General Assembly session in Richmond on Thursday.

The bill had the support of Gov. Terry McAuliffe, as well as several groups advocating for new Virginia gun laws.

HB 1604 would have added a definition of “firearms show vendor” or “vendor” and require that a criminal history record information check be performed on the prospective transferee before the vendor may transfer firearms at a gun show.

Under current law, only licensed dealers must obtain such a check. The bill also required that the promoter of a firearms show provide vendors access to licensed dealers who will conduct the criminal history record information check.

“Of course I am disappointed,” Plum said. “But the outcome was pre-ordained.  Four of the five members of the subcommittee have perfect or near-perfect ratings on the National Rifle Association scorecard. That same subcommittee defeated all the common sense gun safety bills including one to prohibit domestic abusers from having access to guns.”

On the Senate side, the Republican-led Courts of Justice committee earlier in the week killed off 10 gun bills, the majority of a gun control package introduced by McAuliffe. Among the dead bills, a bid to reinstate Virginia’s one-handgun-purchase a month law, which the General Assembly dismantled in 2012, and one that would take away concealed carry permits from owners behind on child support payments.

The Courts of Justice committee advanced several bills that will ease state codes for gun owners. Among them: one that allows lifetime concealed-carry permits rather than requiring re-registration every five years. Other bills allow the possession of weapons on private religious school campuses and allow people with concealed carry licenses to leave guns in their cars in public school parking lots.

However, many of the bills will still face a veto from McAuliffe if they pass the full General Assembly, the Newport News Daily Press reported.

Photo: Ken Plum/file photo

  • Guest

    That’s 2 losses in 2 days (the other being medical marijuana) on bills that Plum has sponsored. In fact, I can’t remember the last time he sponsored a bill that passed the Virginia legislature. So why do we keep sending him back year after year, decade after decade?

    • Karen Goff

      The medical marijuana bill has not been decided on yet

    • Greg

      No idea — Time to fire him and get a competent legislator to represent us.

  • DanH

    Good. How about you open the line to the state police so that anyone can call for a firearms transfer without giving seller’s name or any of the firearm data so no registration can take place and that would be a decent start before you decide private property must be tracked.

    • trac ingr

      Well they aren’t really interested in aiding you privately selling your gun to me and making sure I’m legal, they want instead to do all they can to impede that sale and increase the cost of that sale and track who does what. Their proposed laws are nothing more than unconstitutional power grabs, and we arent having any of it

  • MJay

    “That same subcommittee defeated all the common sense gun safety bills including one to prohibit domestic abusers from having access to guns.”
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t this quote a little disingenuous because the Lautenberg Amendment already makes it a federal crime for domestic abusers, to include those with just a temporary restraining order, prohibits access to firearms? Sounds like Del. Plum is using scare tactics with that quote. In fairness, although I have a small arsenal in my Reston home, I don’t have a problem with what Plum was trying to do here. I take more offense in how he goes about it and his seeming lack of credibility.

    • Mike M

      MJay, Ken is doing what politicians always do – Democrats in particular. How about declaring his proposal “common sense?” The implication is that if you disagree, you are a whack job or an imbecile. Conducive to dialogue?

      The truth is Ken doesn’t propose legislation to solve any problem other than how to fool his electorate into believing he cares, and that he is righteous. Look at dozens of the so-called common sense proposals on gun control. They are not only unconstitutional, they wouldn’t prevent the very incidents that they are purportedly set up to counter. It’s all emotional theater for Dems. The real question is why do we keep re-electing them?


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