Carolyn Maloney unveils gun safety legislation package
House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday unveiled a legislative package of five bills focused on gun safety.
Maloney introduced the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act, which would make gun trafficking a felony and make straw purchasing — when someone buys a gun for another person who is ineligible — a felony as opposed to a misdemeanor.
She also introduced the Handgun Trigger Safety Act, which would incentivize the development of “smart-gun technology” that would only allow authorized gun owners to fire a gun. In addition, Maloney introduced the Firearm Risks Protection Act, which would require gun owners to purchase liability insurance.
The New York Democrat also unveiled the Gunshow Loop Hole Act to require people who buy guns at gun shows to undergo background checks. In addition, the NICS Review Act would require the FBI retain records of the National Instant Criminal Background Check system for at least 90 days so that the agency and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives can review records.
Maloney’s proposals will likely have a hard time getting much traction. Even if they advanced past the Democratically controlled House, they would need at least 10 Republican votes to get to the 60 needed to get through the Senate.
However, Maloney expressed optimism that the Senate would take up gun safety legislation.
“We're particularly positioned well to pass these bills that have been around a long time, and that the American people ... overwhelmingly support,” Maloney said. "So we have a, we have a very good opportunity.”
The legislation comes days ahead of the third anniversary of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School in Parkland, Fla.
Fred Guttenberg, who’s daughter Jaime was one of the victims of the shooting, said Maloney’s package treats gun violence as public health issue rather than a Second Amendment one.
“The reality of gun violence and gun safety is not a second amendment conversation,” Guttenberg said. “It is not, it is a public health conversation.”
The FBI conducted more than 39.6 million background checks in 2020, a record number as the country dealt with the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 election, and protests over racial injustice. More than 43,000 people died of gun violence-related deaths the year, according to the Gun Violence Archive.