Lawmakers target ‘boyfriend loophole’ in latest gun control push

House and Senate lawmakers are pushing for new gun control restrictions that would permanently prohibit people from buying or owning firearms if they are convicted of domestic abuse while in a dating relationship. The effort to close the so-called “boyfriend loophole” comes less than a year after President Biden signed a law that took a step toward treating people in dating relationships as spouses when domestic violence occurs. In 2022, Biden signed the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which added convicted domestic violence abusers in dating relationships to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). The move effectively bans abusive dating partners from owning a gun, but not permanently. The 2022 law allows abusive partners to be removed from NICS five years after the completion of their sentence and if no other crimes were committed, and only puts abusers on NICS list in the first place if they were “recently” in a relationship that led to abuse. GUN CONTROL LOBBY’S LATEST DEMANDS SHOW THE GOAL IS TO STRIP AMERICANS OF THEIR 2A RIGHTS, NRA SAYS Legislation introduced last week by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., seeks to permanently block abusers in dating relationships from buying or owning a gun, regardless of how long ago they were in a that relationship. Their bill eliminates language in the current law that requires people to have “recently” been in an abusive relationship. The new restriction would also apply to convicted stalkers. ILLINOIS FIGHTS BACK AFTER JUDGE SLAPS RESTRAINING ORDER ON GUN CONTROL LAW “Federal law still includes a ‘boyfriend loophole’ that allows abusive dating partners subject to protection orders and convicted stalkers to access firearms,” said Dingell. “I know this fear all too well. Growing up, I lived in a house with a man – my father – who should not have had access to a gun. I remember the terror my siblings and I felt as we hid from him in the closet and in fear of him using it to hurt my mother.” “As a former prosecutor, I have seen firsthand the serious emotional and physical toll stalking takes on victims, especially when guns are involved,” Klobuchar said. “By preventing convicted stalkers from purchasing guns, our common sense legislation will protect victims and help save lives.” ILLINOIS SHERIFF REFUSES TO ENFORCE NEW GUN CONTROL LAW: ‘CLEAR VIOLATION OF THE 2ND AMENDMENT’ While the bill is sponsored by Democrats in the House and Senate, it does have one Republican cosponsor in the House: Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania. He agreed that a permanent ban on domestic abusers is needed even outside of marriage. “Domestic abusers should never be allowed access to firearms, period,” said Fitzpatrick. “The current intimate partner loophole allows violent domestic abusers to purchase firearms, and this bipartisan legislation takes that ability away.”

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