Everytown for Gun Safety, one of the largest gun control organizations in the country, is encouraging supporters to sign a petition calling on members of Congress to act immediately "to expand and strengthen Brady Background Checks."
According to Everytown, the so-called "Charleston loophole" needs to be fixed. The gun control group believes this "loophole" allows Americans to buy firearms without undergoing a background check, which is simply false.
What Everytown is referring to is a three-day proceed to sale provision in state and federal laws. If a person attempts to purchase a gun, he or he must undergo a background check through NICS. If, after three days, the background check is delayed, the Federal Firearms Licensees (FFL) – typically a gun store or dealer – can proceed with the sale. The FFL has the option of denying the sale if they choose.
The reason the provision exists is to put pressure on the FBI to get the background check done in a timely manner. Not having that timeframe means a person's background check could get lost in the mix, effectively preventing them from utilizing their Second Amendment rights.
Below is the full letter:
Dear Member of Congres,
I am writing to you as a concerned citizen and supporter of Brady (bradyunited.org) to demand that you take immediate action to prevent gun violence in our country: Please take immediate action to expand and strengthen Brady Background Checks, including closing the deadly “Charleston loophole,” and save lives.
Right now, 1 in 5 guns are sold without a background check – no questions asked. Since the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (Brady Bill) was implemented on February 28, 1994, it has blocked more than 3.5 million unlawful purchases, with over 278 million purchase requests processed by the NICS system that Brady established. Between 1994 and 2015, an average of 397 prohibited purchasers were blocked from buying guns every single day.
But, it has now been 27 years since the Brady Bill was enacted and it is long past time to expand lifesaving Brady Background Checks to EVERY gun sale and fix the deadly Charleston loophole. This is not a partisan issue – in fact, the American people know that this is about taking action, not sides: Over 90 percent of Americans support expanding background checks.
The deadly Charleston loophole in our nation's background checks allows gun sales to be completed after just three business days even if the background check is incomplete and it is how a white supremacist killer was able to obtain and kill 9 Black worshippers in the 2015 shooting at Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, SC. The tragedy at Emanuel A.M.E. Church could have been prevented, but six years later, this dangerous gap still exists, and it puts all of us at risk. In 2016 and 2017 alone, the Charleston loophole allowed over 9,000 prohibited gun buyers to obtain firearms.
Please, do not let another American lose their life: Please take immediate action to expand and strengthen Brady Background Checks. I am counting on you to take lifesaving action that the majority of our citizens support. We cannot stand to wait another day.
Our community counts on you to pass common-sense legislation to protect us. Please bring this lifesaving legislation to a vote!