January 28, 2011
Clergy and family members of victims of the Virginia Tech mass shooting are again calling on legislators to require background checks on all purchases at gun shows.
They gathered Thursday to support Del. Jennifer McClellan's bill to close the "gun-show loophole," which allows private transactions at the events without the background checks that dealers must perform.
The bill has been unsuccessful for years despite an increased lobby after the 2007 shootings at Virginia Tech that killed 32. Seventeen states require the checks.
Opponents argue the shooter didn't buy his weapons at gun shows. They say private sales should be protected.
Supporters say the checks would keep criminals, the mentally ill and others banned from buying guns from getting them at the events.