Hillary Clinton unveils gun control plan during Monday campaign stop
U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said on Monday that, if elected, she would use the power of her office to curb gun violence if necessary.
Expanding background checks and making it easier to hold negligent manufacturers and dealers accountable would be some of the measures she would take, she said.
Clinton has spoken forcefully in favor of new gun control measures after a gunman killed nine people and wounded another nine last week on the campus of Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon.
“How many people have to die before we actually act, before we come together as a nation?” Clinton asked at a community college in Manchester, New Hampshire, which she said was similar to the Oregon campus.
Clinton has said she wants to build a “national movement” to counter the influence of the National Rifle Association, the nation’s top gun-rights advocacy group.
At the Manchester town hall and in background documents provided to reporters, Clinton detailed the measures she would take if elected to the White House in November 2016.
Clinton said that if the U.S. Congress will not act, she would use presidential executive authority to close a “loophole” to ensure people buying firearms at gun shows and on the Internet undergo the same background checks and pay the same sales tax as when buying from traditional retailers.
Clinton will also push Congress to pass laws that prohibit all domestic abusers, including stalkers, from purchasing guns and to close what she called the “Charleston loophole,” referring to a June shooting at a black church in Charleston, South Carolina, that left nine dead.
Currently, if a background check is not completed within three days, a gun sale can proceed. The alleged Charleston shooter was able to buy his gun because of this loophole, as did 2,500 people in 2014 who would have otherwise been barred from making such a purchase, Clinton’s campaign said.
Clinton also reiterated that she wanted to get “military-style assault weapons” off streets, to repeal a 2005 law that she says gives gun manufacturers and dealers “immunity,” and to tighten restrictions on straw purchasers who give guns to others.
“They’re not new,” Clinton said of her proposals. “There’s nothing unique about them, other than I am so determined to do everything we possibly can.”
As a U.S. senator representing New York, Clinton voted against the law that prevents victims of gun violence from holding negligent manufacturers and dealers accountable for crimes committed with their guns.
(Reporting By Amanda Becker; Additional reporting by Emily Stephenson; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore and Lisa Von Ahn)