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Gillibrand, McCarthy To Introduce Gun Control Bill

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

For a second straight day, Mayor Michael Bloomberg drew attention to the need to curb illegal guns. Today, he stood with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy, who announced legislation to crack down on gun traffickers. WNYC's Arun Venugopal has more.

REPORTER: Senator Gillibrand was previously a staunch defender of gun rights, but now she's embraced by the gun control lobby. With this legislation she says the bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms would get an additional 1,500 agents and inspectors. That would let them monitor gun dealers who don't do enough to screen out potential criminals.

GILLIBRAND: Because right now, they only have the capability to check gun dealers once every 7-20 years, literally. It is so outrageous.

The legislation would also increase penalties for gun traffickers. Separately, Gillibrand is co-sponsoring legislation to close the so-called "terror gap." That would prevent anyone on the terror watch list from being able to buy a gun. Gun rights advocates oppose the measure, saying the watch list includes thousands of people who are not actually criminals. For WNYC, I'm Arun Venugopal.

WNYC has more reporting on gun control issues here.

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