The Michigan Senate on Wednesday rejected a National Rifle Association-backed proposal to let people buy handguns through private sales without undergoing criminal background checks.
The Senate instead voted 27-11 for a substitute proposal that makes it easier for people to apply for gun permits but retains the checks.
The state House voted in June for a bill to repeal the requirement to undergo a check before buying a handgun. Federal law requires checks before buying guns from licensed dealers but not for private sales. The House bill also would have required police to discard their records of previous gun purchase applications.
The Senate was poised to vote on the House-passed bill Wednesday, but instead agreed on a voice vote to consider a substitute that retained the pre-sale background check provisions.
The Senate bill makes several steps to ease the gun purchase application process in Michigan. Most notably, it eliminates the requirement that people buying handguns from licensed dealers go through state and federal background checks. Only people buying guns from private individuals — about 48 percent of Michigan sales, according to the mayors' group — would need the checks.I suppose you could say Michigan is moving in the right direction after all.
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