Reacting in response to the NYPD’s press conference over their biggest-ever gun-trafficking bust (you know the one, where 254 guns were pointed at the media), New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand penned the following fiction:
What is shocking to me as a mother and a lawmaker is that while business along the Iron Pipeline of trafficked guns continues to thrive, effectively none of the federal laws we have on the books are directly focused on preventing straw purchasing or gun trafficking.
This makes it too easy for straw purchasers to buy guns for gun traffickers, and too easy for traffickers to bring guns to states with stricter gun laws and sell hundreds of firearms to criminals.
“Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” is a long-running joint campaign between the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE). They remind people on their web site and through in-store displays that:
- An illegal firearm purchase (straw purchase) is a federal crime.
- An illegal firearm purchase can bring a felony conviction sentence of ten years in jail and a fine of up to $250,000.
Doesn’t that mean that there are existing laws for existing straw purchasing?
Why, yes, it does.
What anti-gun Senator Gillibrand is unlikely to tell you is that under the Obama Administration, the U.S. Department of Justice is prosecuting fewer of these crimes:
…recent studies show the Obama administration has not enforced many gun laws already on books — with gun crime prosecutions hitting a decade low in 2011, down 40 percent from their peak under President George W. Bush in 2004, according to federal data crunched by Syracuse University. The SU study prompted 23 House Republicans on Friday to call on President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder to prosecute more people for gun-related crimes.
“It is imprudent to simply call for new laws without examining the efficacy of the current laws,” wrote House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va. “We must all be looking for ways to prevent senseless acts of violence and the taking of innocent life, but the best place to start would be enforcing the laws that Congress has already enacted.”
Perhaps, Senator Gillibrand, you should push the President to actually enforce the laws already on the books, instead of dishonestly suggesting we need more gun control laws.