Resolution on Firearms Purchase Waiting Periods Exposed

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The Resolution On Firearms Purchase Waiting Periods is listed under ALEC's Public Safety and Elections Task Force and was included in the 1995 ALEC Sourcebook of American State Legislation. ALEC has attempted to distance itself from this piece of legislation after the launch of in 2011, but it has done nothing to get it repealed in the states where it previously pushed for it to be made into law.

ALEC Resolution Text

WHEREAS, the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States guarantees each law-abiding citizen the right to keep and bear arms of his or her choosing; and

WHEREAS, an estimated 70 million citizens, representing one-half of American households, have exercised this Constitutional right; and

WHEREAS, several attempts have been proposed recently to impose "waiting periods" before the purchase of firearms to determine, under the law, the eligibility of potential purchasers; and

WHEREAS, there is no criminological evidence to show that "waiting periods" are effective in reducing either gun-related or violent crime; and

WHEREAS, National Institute of Justice studies have shown that restrictive "gun control" laws are ineffective against violent criminals who show contempt for all laws; and

WHEREAS, the imposition of "waiting periods" for firearms purchases is a diversion of scarce law enforcement resources away from violent crime and criminals; and

WHEREAS, a task force for the Attorney General of the United States, acting in compliance with a Congressional mandate, has concluded that the nation's criminal record system is inaccurate, incomplete, and unreliable; and

WHEREAS, the same task force has determined that even with accurate records for the nation's criminal justice system, any method attempting to prevent criminals from obtaining firearms would be ineffective against more than five-sixths of all criminals seeking to acquire a firearm; and

WHEREAS, the Attorney General has determined that "(t)here are serious obstacles for those who seek support for a federally mandated, seven-day waiting period;" and

WHEREAS, two-thirds of the states, including ten states in 1989, have chosen to reject the imposition of any type of "waiting period" scheme on firearms purchasers; and

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the American Legislative Exchange Council recommends the rejection, by federal, state, and local governing bodies, of further restrictions on law-abiding American citizens in the form of "waiting periods" of any length; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the American Legislative Exchange Council supports the conclusions of the Report of the Attorney General on Systems for Identifying Felons Who Attempt to Purchase Firearms and recommends that the states immediately allocate the resources necessary to upgrade the criminal justice reporting system; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the American Legislative Exchange Council recommends instead that the scarce resources of the law enforcement and criminal justice systems be focused upon uniform, consistent, and just sentencing, speedy trials, and increased punishment and incarceration for those who commit violent crime; and,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the clerk of the (House of Representatives or the Senate) transmit copies of this resolution to the President and Vice President of the United States, to the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, to the Attorney General of the United States, and to each Member of Congress of the United States.

1995 Sourcebook of American State Legislation