MADISON, WI – The Wisconsin Legislative Black Caucus issued the following statement in support of the bill proposed to close the unlicensed gun seller loophole:
“Background checks are an efficient and effective way to keep guns out of the hands of those who should not possess them. They help reduce gun violence and promote gun safety. However, despite being settled as sound policy, they are still not required in all gun transactions. Online sellers, gun show vendors, and pawn shops are currently permitted to sell deadly weapons without any idea to whom they are selling – and it’s estimated that as many as 1 in 5 gun purchases occur this way.
“The Caucus fully backs this common sense gun legislation, and urges our Republican colleagues to close this loophole. In states that require background checks for all handgun sales, it’s estimated that there are 47% fewer women shot to death by intimate partners, 53% fewer law enforcement officers shot to death, and 48% lower rates of gun trafficking. Simply put, background checks work.
“Not only are they sound policy, background checks are almost universally supported: 81% of Wisconsinites support background checks, and so too do 78% of households that own guns. It is rare to see an issue that has this much public agreement. Maybe it’s because they keep our communities and families safer – since 1998, the background check system currently in place has blocked more than 2.5 million attempted purchases by people who are prohibited from buying guns. That’s at least 2.5 million fewer guns on our streets, a number that would only increase by closing this loophole.”