People who want to buy guns must know that background checks are a requirement. However, there’s is a loophole in the system. Let’s discuss more below!
FBI Delays Background Checks to Prevent Gun Sales
In February and the beginning of March, firearms dealers saw a surge in gun and ammunition sales. This also meant more background checks for the FBI to do.
But in some states and municipalities, that surge came to a screeching halt when “State of Emergency” and “Stay at Home” orders were issued.
Over-reaching governments in Maine, New Jersey, Washington State, and LA county all deemed firearms dealers as “non-essential businesses” and shuttered the outlets alongside home goods stores, gyms, and spas.
Until the federal government stepped in on March 25 declaring gun stores essential, law-abiding citizens were unable to exercise their 2nd Amendment right.
Now, the FBI may be using a loophole to stall criminal background checks required for gun purchases. And the delay can be extended until the submission for the background check has expired.
The Need for Background Checks When Purchasing a Firearm
When a potential purchaser of a firearm goes into a licensed gun retailer (called a Federal Firearms Licensee or FFL), they must submit to a criminal background check before they can buy a gun.
National Instant Criminal Background Checks System (NICS) needs this background check. Then, they determine if the potential purchaser falls into any of the categories that would prohibit gun ownership.
While a NICS background check should theoretically be completed instantly, the FBI can put a hold on the purchase for up to three business days for a thorough records search.
If the FFL does not hear back from the FBI after three business days, the decision to make the sale falls into the hands of the FFL.
If the FBI later finds that the purchaser is prohibited from owning a firearm, the FFL can face major legal consequences.
The Never-Ending Loophole
Here is where the loophole comes in.
The 3-business day provision includes the language “when state offices are open.” It was allowed so that the FBI would not have to process background checks during a long weekend.
But under “State of Emergency” orders, state offices are currently “closed” for 30 days or more. In truth, state offices are open in a limited capacity.
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The FBI can conceivably, albeit illegally, put holds on all submissions to NICS. It has also alerted FFL that that is exactly what they are doing.
In a blatant disregard for the 2nd Amendment, the FBI is not processing background checks for 30+ days.
And here’s the real kicker – a submission into NICS for a background check expires after 30 days.
At this point in time, a law-abiding citizen can apply and re-apply indefinitely for the ability to own a firearm, with no end in sight.
Just as the President stepped in to reopen gun stores in late March, the hope is that he will step in again to stop this infringement on the 2nd Amendment.
As local and state governments continue to view this pandemic as a rights grab, the 2nd Amendment has been hit the hardest.
The right to protect your family, your property, and yourself is one that we must fight to protect.
What are your thoughts on this? We’d love to hear from you in the comments section!