On July 22, the LA Times suggested the heinous attacks in Charleston and Chattanooga prove the need for more gun control on law-abiding citizens and indicated they will “continue to push the boulder up the hill and urge Congress” to act.
According to the Times, the two attacks justify Mike Thompson’s (D-CA-5th) push to expand background checks to cover more gun sales and provide millions of dollars to various states to encourage them to “improve their voluntary reporting of barred persons to the national database” for the National Instant Criminal Background Check Systems (NICS).
The efficacy of such gun control is immediately suspect when one considers that alleged Charleston gunman Dylann Roof passed a background check for his gun and alleged Chattanooga gunman Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez acquired at least “some” of his guns “legally,” as well.
Undaunted, the Times continues to the next gun control bill they support–namely, Representative Jim Clyburn’s (D-SC-6th) push to end a so-called background check “loophole” that Clyburn, Moms Demand Action, and Everytown for Gun Safety claim allowed Roof to pass a background check in the first place. These claims run counter to FBI Director James Comey, who explained that Roof actually passed a check because of a clerical error by an FBI background check examiner. That is not a loophole.
As The Hill reports, a drug charge that should have barred Roof from a gun purchase was not found because the “FBI examiner faxed a request for information on Roof’s arrest to the wrong county’s sheriff’s office.”
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) commented, “It’s disastrous that this bureaucratic mistake prevented existing laws from working and blocking an illegal gun sale. [But] the facts undercut attempts to use the tragedy to enact unnecessary gun laws.”
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.