O’Reilly Spars With Utah Rep. Over Tracking of Heavy Weapons Purchases

Wednesday, 25 Jul 2012 01:30 PM

By Patrick Hobin

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Fox News host Bill O’Reilly squared off with Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah on gun control in the wake of the Aurora movie massacre and called for the FBI to track the sales of assault weapons and huge ammunition purchases.

O’Reilly said it makes sense for Congress “to pass a new law that requires the sale of all heavy weapons to be reported to the FBI. In this age of terrorism, that law is badly needed.”

The Republican congressman fired back and said that “giving the FBI a master list of everybody who owns weapons in this country is not the right direction,” and said that some tracking is already being done. “If you buy a fully automatic weapon, you have to go get a tax certificate from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms in order to do that. You have to pass a fingerprint background check,” he told O’Reilly.

O’Reilly said that wasn’t true and anybody can purchase heavy weapons at a gun show without any reporting. Chaffetz again disagreed, saying, “No. You don't have, you can't go out and just go and buy a bazooka as you suggest or a fully automatic machine gun. There are laws on the books.”

But a New York Daily News article on Wednesday revealed one of its reporters this week walked into the same store where accused Aurora killer James Holmes bought his assault weapon and came away within two hours with a $1,200 assault weapon. The reporter filled out background check paperwork including his full name, address, Social Security number, city and state of birth and answered a dozen simple questions before walking out of the store with his heavy weapon, the Daily News reported.

“You can buy an AK-47 in this country and no federal agency will know you by it,” O’Reilly said. “And as the guy in Colorado proved, you can buy a mass amount of ammunition on the net, ok, and nobody is reported . . . If you sell heavy weaponry — all right — semiautomatics, automatics ammunition, all you do is you file with the FBI. And that way the FBI can cross-reference, all right. Say the FBI has you on a terror watch list. And then it comes in that you are buying an AK. Well, the FBI is going to put you under surveillance.”

“Say this guy was bought 60,000 rounds in Colorado, which he did, and the FBI in Denver got wind of that, they would have been watching him. Alright? This just makes common sense. It's not intrusion on gun rights,” the host said.

Chaffetz, exasperated, said, “But Bill, Bill you are ignoring the current law on the books. You are coming up with this wild definition of what is so-called heavy armament.”

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