Two weeks ago when President Obama annnounced his new executive actions on gun control surrounded by children and Vice President Joe Biden he said, "Studies estimate that nearly 40 percent of all gun sales are made by private sellers who are exempt from this requirement.”
From the Washington Post fact checker:
Earlier this week, we gave this claim a “verdict pending.” We said we faced a bit of a conundrum because the 40 percent statistic was based on a single, relatively small survey of 251 people from nearly two decades ago — but that foes of gun control had made it difficult for further research to be conducted.
We also gave kudos to Vice President Biden for acknowledging that the statistic might not be accurate. So we said we would be watching carefully for how the statistic would be used by gun-control advocates in the future
Turns out according to even the Washington Post, that number is far from accurate.
Cash purchase from gun, hardware or department store, from pawnshop, or from seller at gun show, flea market or military, or through mail that respondent says “yes” was FFL [federally licensed dealer]: 22 percent
Add cash purchase from seller at gun show, flea market or military, or though the mail that respondent says “probably was/think so:” 20 percent
Add cash purchases, trades with family, friends/acquaintance that respondent says are or probably are FFL: 14 percent
In other words, rather than being 30 to 40 percent (the original estimate of the range) or “up to 40 percent” (Obama’s words), gun purchases without background checks amounted to 14 to 22 percent. And since the survey sample is so small, that means the results have a survey caveat: plus or minus six percentage points.
So, do we really need new "universal background checks?" Marion P. Hammer says absolutely not, there are already plenty of laws on the books.
That’s what “universal background checks” do. They turn traditional innocent conduct into a criminal offense. They target you, law-abiding gun owners.
Universal background checks are background checks on EVERY transfer, sale, purchase, trade, gift, rental, and loan of a firearm between any and all individuals.
All background checks must be conducted through a federally licensed dealer. (costing hard earned cash) Universal background checks have nothing to do with gun shows – they are about you.
It is ALREADY a federal felony to be engaged in the business of buying and selling firearms and ammunition without having federal firearm dealers license.
It is ALREADY a crime for a federally licensed dealer to sell a gun without doing a background check – that’s all dealers, everywhere, including at retail stores, gun shows, flea markets or anywhere else.
Further, it is ALREADY a federal felony for any private person to sell, trade, give, lend, rent or transfer a gun to a person you know or should have known is not legally allowed to own, purchase or possess a firearm.
The penalty for selling a gun to a person who is a criminal, mentally ill, mentally incompetent, alcohol abuser or drug abuser is 10-year federal felony. That’s now, today, with no changes to the law.
It is even a federal felony to submit false information on a background check form for the purpose of purchasing a firearm.
Even so, according to a 2012 report to the Department of Justice, more than 72,000 people were turned down on a gun purchase in 2010 because they didn’t pass the background check. Yet, only 44 of those cases were prosecuted.
I encourage you to read Hammer's entire argument here.
Katie Pavlich is the Editor at Townhall.com. Follow her on Twitter @katiepavlich. She is a New York Times Best Selling author. Her latest book Assault and Flattery: The Truth About the Left and Their War on Women, was published on July 8, 2014.