Gun Show Loophole

By: Kelly Creswell Email
By: Kelly Creswell Email

Governor Tim Kaine wants the General Assembly to close the so-called gun show loophole.

At this time, licensed gun dealers have to perform background checks for all customers. Kaine wants to expand those checks to all gun shows and strengthening background checks.

The law would require instant background checks at gun shows for licensed dealers and individuals selling firearms. Some families of the victims of the Virginia Tech shootings stood with Kaine as he made the announcement.

However, one local gun shop owner, who used to sell at gun shows, says this legislation is unfair, because he says it takes away an individual's right to sell firearms. He also says the Virginia Tech shooter, Seung-Hui Cho, had no association with gun shows.

"He circumvented the instant check system by buying both firearms at more than 30-day periods," says Jon Ritenour, a gun shop owner. "He had a plan, and he carried it out. He could just have well carried it out with explosives, or he could have just as well carried it out with knives."

Ritenour does agree with Kaine's plan to strengthen the mental health checks during the purchase of a firearm.


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