Biden Bucks Coburn On Gun Registry Opposition


Vice President Biden lashed out at the NRA and made a clear but implicit dig at Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) Wednesday for blocking a key provision of the proposed Senate universal background checks bill, saying it would gut the legislation of its teeth.

Though Biden didn’t mention Coburn by name, it was clear that the Oklahoman bore the brunt of his ire for insisting in the bipartisan Senate gun control talks that no records be required for private gun sales.

Biden’s remarks represent the first public frustration from the White House about the state of the Senate gun talks, which to this point he and Obama have described as constructive efforts with bipartisan support.

“The proposal they’re arguing as they mark up the legislation in the United States Senate are so porous that they are going to allow a truck to be driven through the holes in the legislation they are proposing, loaded with tens of thousands of weapons,” Biden told a meeting of the National Association of Attorneys General.

“For example, they come up with a system where there’s a new version of an instant check system where you go online and check if you’re qualified and then you go to the buyer in a private sale,” Biden continued. “But guess what? They want the law to say no record would be kept. How in the hell would you know if that transaction would be real if no record can be kept?”

Though Coburn and Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) are close to reaching an agreement on background checks, the records issue has now stalled the talks for nearly two weeks. Gun control groups have become frustrated and have begun searching – as has Manchin – for other GOP senators who have credibility with the NRA to join them. The NRA has maintained that extending an existing requirement that gun sales be kept by federally-licensed dealers to private citizens would be a step toward a federal gun registry, which existing law already prohibits

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