Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer reads his favorite state-run media organ, the Washington Post. No Gunwalker Scandal here, and that's the way the Commissar likes it.
Yessiree, Bob. Line up and buy those over-the-counter machine guns at yer nearest gun store! What? You can't? But the Pravda on the Potomac says it happens all the time. You know, from a newspaper that has been deliberately avoiding covering the Gunwalker Scandal, you almost have to admire the chutzpah of something as designedly clueless as this.
Editorial Board Opinion: Common-sense moves on gun regulations.
HAS COMMON sense on gun laws broken out in Washington? Probably not, but over the past couple of weeks there have been a couple of minor but welcome victories in the quest for reasonable gun regulations.
First, Congress axed a provision attached to the budget bill that essentially would have prevented the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives from demanding that licensed gun dealers along the southwest border report multiple sales of certain kinds of long guns. Currently, a dealer must report sales of two handguns or more but is not required to tell the ATF if someone walks out of the store with an armload of AK-47s.
The U.S. Sentencing Commission, which crafts the guidelines used in sentencing federal convicts, meanwhile announced that it would increase penalties for two relatively common gun-related crimes: straw purchases and smuggling.
Straw purchases occur when an individual knowingly buys a gun from an authorized dealer on behalf of a “prohibited purchaser” who would not have passed the required background check. This type of transaction is meant to evade regulations intended to stop lethal weapons from getting into the hands of those with certain criminal histories or suffering from mental illness or drug addiction. The tactic is also used by those working on behalf of criminal organizations, including Mexican drug cartels that snap up the military-style machine guns available in U.S. gun shops.
A first-time conviction for an individual with little or no criminal history would trigger a sentencing range of 15 to 21 months — a relatively modest bump from the current range of 10 to 16 months. Stiffer penalties are possible, depending on the person’s criminal history and the type of weapons purchased.
The commission gets much tougher on gunrunning. Currently, a defendant would have to be convicted of smuggling 10 or more weapons before facing a sentence of 63 to 78 months. Under the commission’s proposal, the same penalties would be triggered for those convicted of smuggling three or more guns.
To its credit, the Obama administration urged the commission to adopt the stricter gun regime. The changes will be forwarded to Congress by May 1 and will take effect Nov. 1 unless Congress acts to block them. Here’s hoping that common sense still prevails next fall.
"The commission gets much tougher on gunrunning."
Uh, what's the new penalty for official government facilitation of gunrunning? You know, they call it "gunwalking"? Grimaldi? Buehler? Anybody? Anybody?