Legislation Would Close ‘Boyfriend Loophole,’ Which Allows Convicted Abusers and Abusers Under Active Restraining Orders to Buy and Keep Guns – Simply Because They Have Not Married, Had a Child with or Lived with the Victim
Poll: More than 90 Percent of Voters Want Congress to Strengthen “Laws That Help Keep Guns out of The Hands of Domestic Abusers,” Including 88 Percent of Republicans, 87 Percent of Gun Owning Households
WASHINGTON – Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown, today released the following statement on the introduction of legislation that would close a dangerous loophole known as the “Boyfriend Loophole,” through which certain domestic abusers can obtain and keep guns. Congress’ introduction of this bill two days after the introduction of bipartisan legislation to update background check laws for the first time in 25 years.
Today, American women are as likely to be killed by dating partners as by spouses. The “Boyfriend Loophole” allows dangerous domestic abusers to legally purchase firearms in the majority of states. While federal law prevents people who have been convicted of domestic abuse or are under final restraining orders from buying a gun if they’ve been married to, lived with or had children with their victim, federal law does not stop an abusive boyfriend or convicted stalker from purchasing a firearm. Senator Klobuchar’s bill would close this deadly loophole at the federal level. More than a dozen states have passed laws to close the loophole already.
STATEMENT FROM SHANNON WATTS, FOUNDER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“We need to disarm all domestic abusers, regardless of whether they’re a married spouse or a dating partner. I’m grateful to Reps. Dingell and Fitzpatrick and Senator Klobuchar for their advocacy to close the boyfriend loophole, which continues to put unmarried women at risk. Every month, more than 50 women are shot and killed by domestic abusers – which includes spouses and dating partners. Now that our Congress has become more representative of the women in this country, I’m hopeful that our laws will, too.”
STATEMENT FROM TIFFANY STARR, A MEMBER OF THE EVERYTOWN SURVIVOR NETWORK WHOSE FATHER, STEPHEN, WAS SHOT AND KILLED BY HER SISTER’S ABUSIVE EX-BOYFRIEND, WHO BROKE INTO THEIR HOME ON DECEMBER 30, 1994:
“It is long past time our laws catch up with the times when it comes to protecting victims of domestic violence. Closing the Boyfriend Loophole won’t end domestic violence, but it will make it more difficult for dangerous abusers to get guns, and families across the country will be safer because of it. Now is the time to break the pattern of gun violence, and I applaud Rep. Dingell and Fitzpatrick, and Senator Klobuchar for taking this important step.”