Yvette Clarke on Gun Control
Proponent's argument for bill:Rep. KELLY (D-IL): As a Nation, we shudder at tragedies like the Newtown shootings. Yet sadly, every day, equally devastating acts of gun violence occur in urban America, often without the same media coverage. Since Newtown, over 6,000 Americans have lost their lives to gun violence. Still, Congress has yet to act on commonsense gun reforms that would save lives.
Opponent's argument against bill:(National Rifle Association editorial in USN&WR): "Stand your ground" or "no duty to retreat" laws recognize that a person who is attacked in any place where that person has a right to be, may use defensive force without first being required to retreat. This is important, because determining whether a safe retreat is available may require a split-second calculation that could end up being a losing gamble for the innocent person who is under attack. Criminals don't always back off when their victims retreat. Despite the Obama administration's assertion that "stand your ground" laws are a new concept in self-defense, they are in fact founded in common sense, natural law, and are well enshrined in American jurisprudence.
H.R.8: To require a background check for every firearm sale. This Act may be cited as the "Background Check Expansion Act".
Opposing argument from the Heritage Foundation, 2/26/2019: Heritage Action opposes the Bipartisan Background Checks Act (H.R. 8) and will include it as a key vote on our legislative scorecard. This legislation would require universal background checks for all firearm sales (even private) with specific exceptions. Unfortunately, universal background checks would do little to prevent firearm violence and would instead make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to purchase, own, carry, and use a firearm. Studies show that universal background checks are largely ineffective when it comes to preventing mass shootings. In addition, most people imprisoned for firearm-related crimes access their firearms illegally through theft, the underground market, family members, or friends. H.R. 8 is poorly written and makes criminals out of many law-abiding Americans who commonly make low-risk firearm transfers.
Legislative outcome Roll call 99 in House on 2/27/2019 passed 240-190-2; introduced in Senate 1/8/2019; no action as of 3/28/2020.
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