WASHINGTON (WAVY) – Senator Tim Kaine (D-Va.) has introduced legislation that would hold gun sellers more accountable for checking the background of buyers, a bill he admits will have a tough time becoming law.
Kaine brought the Responsible Transfer of Firearms Act to the senate floor Monday afternoon. He told 10 On Your Side it puts more responsibility on the shoulders of gun sellers to use the federal background check system already in place. Kaine says if the law were to pass it would govern all gun transactions.
“Whether you’re a private seller or a gun dealer, or whether you’re somebody giving a gun to a relative, or whether you’re at a gun show,” Kaine said. “Why should the law be that you can casually put the weapon in the hands of somebody that is barred from having a weapon?”
Currently the law holds sellers to the standard of knowing the purchaser was barred from owning a weapon, or have reasonable cause to believe that. The Responsible Transfer of Firearms Act would require sellers to take “reasonable steps to make sure that someone is not prohibited from possessing a firearm.”
However Kaine says the legislation has an uphill climb, as would any similar measure at the state level.
“Any bill dealing with gun safety has an extremely difficult time in the General Assembly of Virginia, and has an extremely difficult time in congress.”
Kaine says he supports the second amendment and owns a hunting shotgun. He says the efforts to block measures such as his will come from corporations, not supporters of the second amendment.
“It’s really not lobbying by those who believe in gun rights, it’s generally lobbying by gun manufacturers.”