A Bill has been Introduced in Congress to Register Firearms and Owners-Truth!

A Bill has been Introduced in Congress to Register Firearms and Owners-Truth!

Summary of eRumor:

A forwarded email that says that Congress introduced HR-45, the Blair Holt Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009.  The bill will make it mandatory for gun owners to have firearms registered and provide their Social Security numbers, drivers licenses, thumb prints and submit to a physical and mental evaluation.

The Truth:

There is a HR-45 bill that was introduce to the 111th Congress by Illinois Representative Bobby Rush by the title of “The Blair Holt Firearm Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009.”  

The purpose of the bill, according its description in the Thomas legislative information directory of the Library of Congress, is “To provide for the implementation of a system of licensing for purchasers of certain firearms and for a record of sale system for those firearms, and for other purposes.”   

Currently, the bill has been referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.   Click here for the description and status of HR-45

The bill calls for universal background checks of gun owners, the keeping of records of maintenance and permits, the prevention of child access to firearms, the notification that the gun owner had changed addresses within 60 days and mandatory reporting to the Attorney General of loss or theft of firearms within 72 hours. 

If passed, the bill would require gun owners to fill out an application for a firearm license and provide name, address, birthday, place of birth, any known aliases, a passport sized photograph and a thumb print.  The applicant will also have to sign a statement declaring that they are not prohibited by the state or federal government from possessing a firearm.  Part of the process included is the signing of a certification that the firearm will be safely stored and out of the reach of minors.   The bill also says that the fee for the license is not to exceed $25US.

The bill also requires a written firearm safety examination be passed testing the gun owner’s knowledge in storage, handling, use, state, local and federal legal responsibilities and “any other subjects, as the Attorney General determines to be appropriate.”

The bill does not call for physical or mental evaluations but require “authorization by the applicant to release to the Attorney General or an authorized representative of the Attorney General any mental health records pertaining to the applicant.”

The National Rifle Association (NRA) is keeping a watchful eye on the progress of this bill, calling it a “licensing and registration scheme” and noting that it will “further require the attorney general to establish a database of every handgun sale, transfer, and owner’s address in America.”    Click here for NRA information page on HR-45

updated 02/18/09