Clyburn Launches Petition To Force Vote On Closing The Charleston Loophole

Feb 27, 2018

Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. James E. Clyburn (SC-06), launched a discharge petition that would force a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives on the Background Check Completion Act.  

This bill closes the so-called "Charleston Loophole," which simply requires all background checks be completed and approved prior to the sale of a firearm.  While the vast majority of required criminal background checks for gun sales at licensed firearm dealers are completed within minutes, if the National Instant Criminal Background Check System has not completed its background check after three business days, irrespective of the reason, the dealer is allowed to proceed with the sale. 

"It has been more than two years since the racially motivated attack at Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina took nine lives and injured three others.  As we discovered after the tragedy, the assailant used a firearm that was purchased through a loophole in our background check system, and thousands of weapons slip through this loophole each year.  Congress must act to close this loophole immediately," said Clyburn. “Today, I filed a discharge petition on H.R. 3464, the Background Check Completion Act that would close the so-called 'Charleston Loophole' and strengthen the background check system in our nation.  This bill should have a vote immediately.”

A discharge petition is a procedure that will force an immediate vote on the House floor upon being signed by a majority of members of the House.  This procedure allows the House to take up bills that are supported by a majority of members but blocked by Republican leadership.

Click the image below to watch my floor statement.