Home Written work Booker, Menendez and Blumenthal reintroduce federal gun licensing law

Booker, Menendez and Blumenthal reintroduce federal gun licensing law

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washington d.c. — After another series of deadly mass shootings across the country, U.S. Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and chairman of the Criminal Justice and Anti-Corruption Subcommittee terrorism, Bob Menendez (D-NJ), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) today reintroduced the Federal Firearms Licensing Act, legislation that would require individuals to obtain a firearms license from the Department of Justice (DOJ) before purchasing or receiving a firearm.

Several studies have shown that licensing laws reduce gun violence in states that have enacted them. According to the Giffords Law Center, Connecticut saw its firearm homicide and suicide rates decline by 28 and 33 percent, respectively, after the passage of a state licensing law. In contrast, after Missouri repealed its gun licensing law, the state saw a 47% increase in its firearm homicide rate and 24% increase in its suicide rate. firearm. Licensing laws also have strong support from Americans, with 77% backing the measure according to a 2019 Quinnipiac survey.

“In our country, gun violence has become a strange routine and we have done little to stop the horrific mass shootings that devastate the lives of victims and their loved ones,” said Senator Booker. “Accepting this shameful status quo will continue to have deadly consequences. We need to adopt proven, common-sense measures that will fight the scourge of gun violence and make our communities safer.

“This bill takes us in the right direction and is based on a simple concept – if you need a license to drive a car, you should have one to buy and own a gun,”continued Senator Booker. “Gun licensing laws enjoy broad public support and have been shown to reduce gun violence in states that have enacted them, including my home state of New Jersey. . Now is the time to enact ambitious legislation – as a nation we must rise to the occasion, or we are destined to witness the murderous scenes of this weekend and years past again. »

“America is alone in our inability to protect our citizens from gun violence. While many states, including New Jersey, have common-sense gun laws, the need for federal licensing standards has long been clear,” said Senator Menendez. “Federal gun licensing law would establish a certification process that includes gun safety training and an extensive criminal background and identity check requiring the holder to be 21 years of age. years. We have a moral obligation to prevent these senseless massacres in our schools, supermarkets, places of worship and malls that are tearing communities and families apart. I hope my fellow Republicans will once and for all recognize the urgency to act and join us in passing this legislation before more lives are needlessly lost to gun violence.

“This legislation will save lives and protect communities across the United States from the devastating impact of gun violence,” said Senator Blumenthal. “As the success in Connecticut shows, simple, common-sense standards like licensing laws requiring completion of a background check and gun safety certification work. I am proud to join Senators Booker and Menendez in this effort to combat the epidemic of gun violence in our country.

In order to obtain a federal firearms license, the bill would require the following:

  • Certification that the individual has completed firearms safety training, which must include a written test and practical training to ensure safe and accurate use.
  • Completion of a criminal background check.
  • Submission of fingerprints, proof of identity and verification that the person is at least 21 years old.

The federal firearms license must be renewed every five years, after which the applicant will be required to undergo a background check and retake firearms safety training. The bill contains a mechanism for the DOJ to revoke the license if the individual poses a danger to themselves or others. This would require the Federal Bureau of Investigation to conduct regular audits to ensure individuals are complying with federal licensing requirements and to maintain requirements in place that all persons who purchase firearms from a Federal firearms license holder undergo a background check.

The full text of the legislation can be viewed here.

Background to Booker’s work on addressing the epidemic of gun violence:

Since his early days in public service, Booker has witnessed the devastating impact of gun violence. He is the only senator returning home to a low-income community that is disproportionately affected by violent crime caused by the easy availability of guns. As a result, Booker was a strong advocate for common sense gun safety laws during his tenure in the Senate. He first introduced the Federal Firearms Licensing Act in 2019. It also introduced the revolutionary Law on breaking the cycle of violence which would provide federal grants to communities for evidence-based intervention against gun violence and joined colleagues in introducing a ban on assault weapons.