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Tags: joe biden | kamala harris | gun control | uvalde

Biden, VP Harris Seek Stricter Gun Rules on Uvalde Anniversary

By    |   Friday, 24 May 2024 06:50 PM EDT

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris took advantage Friday of the two-year anniversary of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, to call for stricter gun regulations nationwide.

Biden wrote a letter to the families involved in the tragedy, where Salvador Ramos, 18, a former student at the school, killed 19 children and two teachers before he was shot dead by police, who were faulted for waiting more than an hour to engage the gunman.

Biden offered his prayers and sympathies to the families and applauded their efforts to "demand progress for our nation" and wrote, "I am continuing to call on Congress to ban assault weapons."

It almost mirrored language in a statement issued by the White House in which Harris said, "Congress and state legislators throughout America must have the courage to act by banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, passing red flag laws, and making background checks universal."

Biden and Harris also touted passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which Biden signed into law about a month after the Uvalde massacre.

The law allocates money for states to implement red-flag laws and strengthen mental health services, allocates money for enhanced school safety, adds additional scrutiny of gun buyers who are under the age of 21 or domestic abusers, and enhances penalties for purchasing a gun as a straw buyer or trafficking in guns.

"Through this bill, my administration is closing dangerous loopholes and implementing the most significant expansion of gun background checks in decades," Biden wrote.

Harris said: "Working with gun safety advocates in Uvalde and across the country, we have also taken more action to reduce gun violence than any other administration in history."

The act is now front-and-center in a lawsuit filed May 1 by 21 Republican state attorneys general and five individuals over a new rule implemented in April by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives that broadens the definition of when a person is considered a firearms dealer and, therefore, must be federally licensed and required to run background checks on people to whom they sell guns.

In 1986, Congress passed the Firearms Owners Protection Act as part of the Gun Control Act of 1968. The former narrowed the definition of a firearms dealer as "a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms."

The lawsuit stated the BSCA amended that definition from "with the principal objective of livelihood and profit" to "predominantly earn a profit." And that it defined "predominantly earn a profit" as an "intent underlying the sale or disposition of firearms [that] is primarily one of obtaining pecuniary gain, as opposed to other intents, such as improving or liquidating a personal firearms collection."

Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen said in a news release that the ATF's new rule now defines a "dealer" as anyone who "sells or offers for sale firearms, and also represents to potential buyers or otherwise demonstrates a willingness and ability to purchase and sell additional firearms."

He said it also expands the definition of earning a profit to be determined by something other than money to include personal property, a service, another medium of exchange, or valuable consideration and would not even require a firearm to be sold, just an offer would be deemed engaging in a transaction.

Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Politics
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris took advantage Friday of the two-year anniversary of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, to call for stricter gun regulations nationwide.
joe biden, kamala harris, gun control, uvalde
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Friday, 24 May 2024 06:50 PM
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