LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Democrats have been unsuccessfully trying to expand the state’s limited gun background check law since 2016, and they announced today they are not giving up.
WLNS’ Tim Skubick says this is a fight between the Democrats and the National Rifle Association (NRA.)
The Democrats contend that 90% of citizens want more background checks before firearms are sold, but so far the NRA has enough GOP votes in the state legislature to trump that public support.
Under current state law, the background check laws apply to only pistols. That means all other firearms, including assault weapons, can be sold through this loophole without any review of who is purchasing that weapon.
Michigan ranks 15th in the nation for gun violence.
And so far this year, there are been 195 mass shootings involving some 500 children.
Republicans have refused to hold a hearing on this legislation, although GOP leader Mike Shirkey has promised a hearing on one of the more minor bills in the package.
“it’s not the legislature coming to get your guns, this is only making sure we have common-sense gun reform to protect our citizens,” said State Representative Regina Weiss (D-Oakland County.)
One question remains, would the NRA win if a vote was held today?
“I’m sure there would be a loud voice, but it is out of step where most Michiganders are,” said State Senator Jeremy Moss.
But so far the NRA has convinced Republicans background checks will lead to other restrictions on gun ownership and so far it is winning.