Meehan: Toomey/Manchin Deal Protects Constitutional Rights, Keeps Guns Out of Criminals' Hands

Press Release

Date: April 10, 2013
Location: Washington, DC
Issues: Guns

Congressman Patrick Meehan (PA-07) today issued the following statement on the bipartisan agreement struck by Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) that strengthens our national background check system for gun purchases:

"I support Senator Toomey's plan and thank him for his hard work. The bipartisan agreement accomplishes the goals I set out at the beginning of this debate: it takes effective steps to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn't have them, and it protects the constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans," said Rep. Meehan.

The bipartisan compromise legislation will require background checks for all gun sales online, at gun shows and through classified advertisements. It includes an exemption for sales between friends and family members and covers only gun sales advertised publically or sold at a gun show. It will prohibit the creation of a national gun registry by requiring the FBI to destroy data identifying the purchaser of a gun.

"This common-sense agreement protects family transfers, and it builds on existing Pennsylvania and federal background check laws. Importantly, it ensures no federal gun registry is created and it does not impose federal bureaucratic mandates on private citizens exercising their constitutional rights. It's what I've long fought for, and worked closely with advocates on all sides to achieve. Senate Democrats and Republicans should support it," Meehan said.

Rep. Meehan has been a leader in fighting for common-sense gun violence legislation. Meehan is an original co-sponsor of H.R. 452, the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2013. H.R. 452 is bipartisan legislation that makes gun trafficking a federal crime and strengthens penalties on so-called "straw purchasers" of firearms. H.R. 452 has over 100 co-sponsors from both parties in the House of Representatives.