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Federally Licensed Firearms Retailers Overwhelmingly Oppose ‘Universal Background Checks’

National Shooting Sports Foundation

National Shooting Sports Foundation

NEWTOWN, Conn --( An online survey of federally licensed firearms retailers conducted this week by NSSF reveals that those who would be on the front line of implementing what is touted as “universal background checks” have serious concerns both about whether such proposals would work as well as the potential negative effects on their businesses.

Asked whether they supported or opposed “universal background checks,” 85.7 percent of the responding firearms retailers said that they opposed them.

To the question of whether they believed that such legislation would prevent criminals from obtaining firearms, a nearly unanimous 95.7 percent said no.

In addition, the retailers reported that that they feared these proposals would result in higher regulatory and additional record-keeping burdens, increased risk of license revocation for record-keeping errors related to private party sales of firearms, additional delays in processing of National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) requests, low government-set fees that will not cover their costs, and increased liability exposure arising from having to process private-party transactions.

“The concept of universal background checks sounds appealing on the surface, but the details involved in what actually would be required on the part of firearms retailers to make it work are quite another matter,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “In fact, the obligations and burdens that would be put in place could be overwhelming for many of those who would be called upon to carry them out. It is unfair to call upon private companies, many of them quite small and with limited personnel, to conduct what essentially would be a function of government.”

The online survey of 640 federal licensed firearms retailers nationwide was conducted on Monday, March 18 2013.

About NSSFThe National Shooting Sports Foundation is the trade association for the firearms industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of more than 6,000 manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations and publishers. For more information, log on to

  • 5 User comments to “Federally Licensed Firearms Retailers Overwhelmingly Oppose ‘Universal Background Checks’”

    1. I hope they will all visit: and take the pledge.

    2. I’ll bet the media does not report it this way. Probably the opposite. If you want to see fair non-biased media reporting, watch Fox News. All the other news media are gun grabbers.

    3. Lol, fox is non biased….what planet are you on?
      I just have one question, how do we propose to keep criminals from buying guns if every purchase doesn’t go through the NIcS check?

      Obviously, there should be a family waiver for this check……..

    4. D. Murphy on March 21, 2013 at 11:39 AM said:

      I work in an industry burdened with government regulation, and am audited by them yearly. I can assure you that if any error is found in your paperwork it leads to fines (sometimes thousands of dollars per occurance), possible removal of you operating license in addition to the potential termination of the idividual who comitted the error by the company. The added expense of having to hire dedicated personnel to handle the government paperwork to always be audit ready also has to be factored in. I can see reatilers simply saying no to conducting these background checks for private sales.

    5. When the vocal majority is millions of times greater than the whining minority and we agree with the Federally Licensed Firearms Retailers that “universal background checks” are an invasion of privacy and an attack on the Constitution and their sole intent is to criminalize honest citizens who have not committed any crimes in their lives.

      The whole concept of requiring registration of legally owned firearms leads to lists of people owning firearms that can be rounded up.

      When that happens anyone who chooses not to turn in their firearms is automatically listed as a criminal.

      In the swipe of a pen legal people become criminal and they will then be rounded up into FEMA camps where they will be put to death.

      Welcome to the fourth Reich.

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