Poll after poll shows that expanding background checks to include gun shows and private sales is one of the most popular policy proposals in America. Republican voters like it. NRA members like it. This baby who hates everything probably likes it. Pretty much the only people who aren't wild about the idea are Republican (and some Democratic) members of the House and Senate. Which is pretty odd, considering that their hero and benchmark for Real American Constitutional Values, Ronald Reagan, was an outspoken supporter of background checks. A new gun-control-advocacy group makes this point in a new video today:
The rationale behind Reagan's support of the Brady Bill in 1991 remains just as relevant today:
While there has been a Federal law on the books for more than 20 years that prohibits the sale of firearms to felons, fugitives, drug addicts and the mentally ill, it has no enforcement mechanism and basically works on the honor system, with the purchaser filling out a statement that the gun dealer sticks in a drawer.
The honor system! Ridiculous! And yet the honor system is still used for all sales that take place outside of a licensed gun dealership, which, according to one fairly outdated survey, account for 40 percent of firearm purchases in America. If Zombie Reagan were around today, he'd be like, "Seriously, guys? Do you want me to get shot by another Jodie Foster obsessive? What happened to your brrraaaaains?"