Background verify loopholes in gun sales place Texans in danger

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HOUSTON CHRONICLE.COM  October 9, 2019
– Even prior to the mass
shooting in Odessa, Texas’ two highest elected officials knew about a harmful
background verify loophole in stranger-to-stranger gun sales.

Gun reform advocate Ed Scruggs attended a meeting known as immediately after the El Paso shooting in which he says each Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick acknowledged the loophole was ripe for abuse and that it wasn’t a intelligent way to sell a weapon considering the fact that Texans could be promoting to a terrorist and not even know it. Each seemed genuinely concerned, Scruggs told the Texas Observer, and he was encouraged.

Then, a
tiny more than a week later, that extremely loophole was utilized by a gunman who killed
seven folks and wounded at least 21 close to Odessa. In Texas, no background verify
is expected for private sales in between folks. So the Odessa gunman was
permitted to acquire an assault-style rifle from a private seller, even even though he
failed a background verify in 2014 for the reason that of a “mental health” challenge.

This
revelation seemed to prompt a shift in Patrick, an ardent conservative with an
A-plus rating from the National Rifle Association. He broke with the gun lobby
and stated he was “willing to take an arrow” to assistance expanding Texas
background checks to stranger-to-stranger sales.

“When I speak to gun owners, NRA members and voters, folks do not recognize why we let strangers to sell guns to total strangers when they have no notion if the individual they’re promoting the gun to could be a felon, could be an individual who’s receiving a gun to go commit a crime or could be a possible mass shooter or an individual who has significant mental problems,” Patrick told the Dallas Morning News.

Patrick’s about-face was as surprising as it was welcome — as was his subsequent steadfastness in the face of withering criticism from the gun lobby. [Read More]

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