Pa. Capitol rally calls for expanded gun background checks

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A rally in the state Capital Rotunda on Monday called on Pennsylvania lawmakers to pass legislation to expand background checks on gun buyers.

House Bill 1010 and Senate Bill 1049 would require sales of all guns, regardless of barrel length, be conducted in front of a licensed importer, manufacturer, dealer, or county sheriff. Current law applies only to short-barreled firearms.

Family transfers would still be excluded from the background check requirement.

At the same time, the bills would make it easier to purchase firearms at gun shows. A person could obtain a 48-hour background check approval and then shop during that time without paying for multiple background checks if they make more than one purchase.

The rally was organized by CeaseFirePA and Pennsylvania United for Background Checks.

“We think that’s the best way to make sure guns do not fall into the hands of people who shoudn’t have them,” said Shira Goodman, executive director of CeaseFirePA.

Linda Kozic of Saylorsburg has experienced gun violence first-hand. In 2013 a disgruntled resident walked into a Ross Township supervisors meeting in Monroe County and opened fire. One of the bullets killed Linda’s husband. Another bullet ripped through her leg.

“We are not asking for a lot,” she said. “We are asking for background checks and if you deserve to have a gun you will have a gun and if you don’t that’s the way it goes.”

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