ST. PAUL, Minn. - The House Democrat pushing for broader restrictions to Minnesota gun laws has abandoned imposing universal background checks for firearm sales.
Rep. Michael Paymar of St. Paul says he's switching to a plan that would expand background checks to sales at gun shows but not to private sales and transfers.
"This means the end of 237 as I know of it," Paymar said shortly after he called the committee to order and then adjourned it thirty seconds later.
Paymar said he will now work with house members, on both sides of the asile, to get the gun show loophole issues into legislation already introduced.
Paymar says he'd like to see background checks on all gun transactions at gun shows. Currently licensed dealers selling at gun shows run background checks, but individuals selling guns at gun shows don't run background checks.
The Republicans and gun rights advocates say expanding background checks to gun show sales is a nonstarter for their members.
In addition, Paymar says he also plans to include many provisions from the alternate package of less-restrictive gun measures that would tighten the state's current background check system, add to the parameters of who cannot legally own a gun and help county attorneys crack down on illegal gun owners.
Rep. Debra Hilstrom has authored an alternative gun bill. That bill has not been heard in committee, but could get a chance now that Paymar's bill is dead.
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