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Jim Clyburn Introduces the Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2021 to Close the “Charleston Loophole”

The House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn (D- S.C.) reintroduced the Enhanced Background Checks Act seeking to close the imaginary “Charleston Loophole.” Gun sellers are currently allowed to complete a firearm transfer if the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) does not provide results within three business days.

Radical gun control activists want the provision lifted entirely, while Biden proposed a minimum of ten days. During this period, law-abiding Americans would be left vulnerable through no fault of their own. The limit was introduced to ensure that the government did not arbitrarily violate law-abiding American’s Second Amendment due to a technicality.

The Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2021 introduces a minimum waiting period of ten days if no response is received from the NICS. The applicant should also submit an electronic petition for review by the Attorney General reiterating that there’s no reason to believe they would fail the background check.

The petition would spur the FBI to expedite an investigation on whether the subject is allowed to own guns.

“The FBI will have 10 additional business days from the date the petition was submitted to complete the background check before a sale could proceed under federal law,” Brady United explains.

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Those failing to submit the electronic petition must wait until their background checks complete to receive firearms or an additional 25 days after the notification or 30 days since the first contact and fulfillment of requirements.

The bill was initially introduced as the Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2019, HR 1112, which passed the 116th Congress on a 228 to 198 vote. With Democrats controlling Congress, this anti-gun measure is also expected to pass.

Commenting on the Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2021, the National Shooting Sports (NSSF) Senior Vice President and General Counsel Lawrence Keane, says that the bill could delay legal firearm ownership by a month. Law-abiding citizens must also prove their innocence, which is “un-American.”

“This bill increases the burden on small business firearm retailer owners and flips the burden of proof on its head,” Keane adds. “This would make it incumbent upon the law-abiding citizen to prove his or her innocence to the government to exercise their Second Amendment right to purchase a firearm instead of the government being responsible for proving an individual is prohibited.”

The imaginary loophole was aptly named after the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina. The assailant, Dylann Roof, acquired a firearm because his background checks did not return any criminal records allowing the sale to proceed.

However, the then-FBI Director James Comey attributed the incident to an FBI’s error failing to capture Dylann’s felony drug charges that were “mistakenly attributed to the Lexington County, S.C., Sheriff's Department, not Columbia police,” according to US Today.

Anti-gunners found an opportunity to exploit in propagating their anti-gun agenda and they ran with it. The “Charleston Loophole” is just an excuse to diminish law-abiding Americans’ right to keep and bear arms.

The most frustrating thing is that the rule won't affect criminals who acquire their guns illegally. Instead, they will have an advantage over the law-abiding citizens who would be restrained by the redundant gun control law.


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