Saturday Feb 16, 201306:59 PM GMT
US Senators close to deal on expanded gun background checks
Sat Feb 16, 2013 6:49PM
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A group of US Senators is reportedly set to present a proposal to expand the gun background check system, amid efforts to control gun-related violence in the country.


According to sources familiar with ongoing talks, Republicans Tom Coburn and Mark Kirk, and Democrats Chuck Schumer and Joe Manchin are “95 percent of the way there” and may well be able to resolve remaining differences.

The group of four has reportedly reached an agreement on expanding the background check to cover nearly all private sales and the concept of improving state mental illness data-sharing with federal agents.

The four Senators are now discussing possible exemptions, such as sales among family members, and making minor changes to the way background checks are done for private sales in certain rural areas.

It is reported that the group is attempting to agree on exempting those, who hold “conceal and carry” permits from background checks, making the proposal appealing for gun rights lawmakers.

The four are also working on ensuring that the extended background checks will not lead to creating a national gun registry, which is against the current law.

Sources say that a draft could soon be presented, which will likely include exemptions and reassurance for Republicans as Democrats try to expand the background check to cover practically all private sales within the law’s current framework.

The proposal of expanding background checks was launched after the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in December 2012 when 20 children and six educators were shot dead.

CAH/HGH/SL
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