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What They’re Saying: Maryland Long Gun Loophole Hearing

On Wednesday, Maryland lawmakers heard testimony on HB 4, legislation that would require background checks on all sales of rifles and shotguns in the state. See coverage highlights below:

Maryland Reporter: Widow of Capital Gazette editor gives emotional testimony on gun-safety bill

“‘I know what it really means when people say it’s too easy for dangerous people to acquire firearms. Maryland may have some of the strongest gun laws in the country but it’s not enough. There are significant loopholes that endanger our families, including the loopholes corrected by this bill,’ said Andrea Chamblee, a volunteer with the Maryland chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.”

ABC Baltimore: Gun safety advocates testify in Annapolis in support of background check legislation

“Advocates were in Annapolis on Wednesday to push for stricter gun laws in Maryland. Volunteers, survivors of gun violence and policy experts testified in support of legislation that would require background checks on all long gun sales.”

Capital Gazette: Dozens come to Annapolis for hearing on bill proposing background checks for rifle, shotgun transfers

“For House Bill 4 — which would require background checks for the private transfer of long guns — women in red and men wearing buttons that read “Man enough to be Moms” began gathering outside the House Judiciary Committee Room more than an hour ahead of the hearing time. Many said they were survivors of gun violence. Members of Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense in America, many of whom wore the group’s signature red t-shirts and hats, came to support the bill.”

The Baltimore Sun Editorial Board: Close the long gun loophole on background checks

“People are fighting violent crime in this state tooth and nail from the police officers who put themselves in harm’s way to caregivers fighting to keep their families alive and unharmed, who are searching for solutions. For them, for the families and friends of innocent gun violence victims like our colleagues Gerald Fischman, Robert Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith and Wendi Winters. you say you can’t stomach a background check before taking home your next shotgun?”

Currently, Maryland’s law does not require a background check on the sales of rifles and shotguns by unlicensed sellers. That makes it easy for convicted felons, domestic abusers and other people who are legally prohibited from having guns to obtain these deadly weapons from unlicensed sellers through sales arranged online or at gun shows. 

More information about the proposed legislation to require background checks on all sales of rifles and shotguns in the state is available here. To request an interview, please don’t hesitate to reach out.