Under current federal law, terror suspects who are barred from flying on planes can legally purchase firearms and explosives.
There is a “Terror Gap” Petition to change this law.
However, the petition is sponsored by the same New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg who, last Sunday, implied that the Times Square bomber was a TEA Party conservative when he said the bomb could have been placed by “somebody with a political agenda who doesn’t like the health care bill.”
For that reason, I do not trust this petition. I can just see Obama declaring as all veterans, Christians, pro-lifers, pro-2nd Amendment, and TEA Partiers to be “terrorist suspects” and then take our gun rights away. Afterall, none other than the Obama administration’s Dept of Homeland Security had said exactly that in a leaked memo last year.
H/t beloved FellowshipOfMinds member May.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRESS RELEASE: Coalition Co-Chair Mayor Bloomberg Urges Congress to Enact Common Sense Ban on Sales of Guns and Explosives to Terror Suspects
Hearing by Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs on National Security Threats Caused by the Terror Gap
In the Past Six Years People on the Terrorist Watch Lists Succeeded in Purchasing Guns and Explosives from Licensed Dealers 1,119 Times
Join Tens of Thousands of Concerned Citizens at www.TerrorGap.org and Send a Message to Congress to Close the Terror Gap
Mayors Against Illegal Guns co-chair Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York City today testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. In his testimony, Mayor Bloomberg urged Congress to close the Terror Gap, a loophole in federal law that allows individuals on the terrorist watch lists to purchase firearms and explosives. Mayor Bloomberg was joined at the hearing by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), the lead sponsor of Senate legislation that would close the Terror Gap; U.S. Representative Peter King (R-NY), the Ranking Member of the Homeland Security Committee and sponsor of the House bill; and Los Angeles Police Department Deputy Chief Sandy Jo MacArthur, the top counterterrorism official to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
“Today, the Government Accountability Office released data showing that 1,119 people on the terror watch lists were able to buy guns and explosives from licensed dealers over the past six years—and the FBI has been powerless to stop it,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Working with our state and federal law enforcement partners, we’ve developed sophisticated counterterrorism capacities to keep our streets safe. That’s exactly why the Terror Gap — a loophole in federal law that allows individuals on terrorist watch lists to purchase firearms and explosives — flies in the face of common sense. We need Congress to close the Terror Gap and join us in opposing the easy access that terror suspects have to guns and explosives.”
“This week’s attempted bombing in Times Square was a sharp reminder that threat of terrorism is very real both from inside and outside our country,” said Rep. Peter King. “The war on terror must be fought from all directions and law enforcement must have all the tools they need to keep our cities safe. Closing the Terror Gap is one very important step in this process to prevent dangerous weapons and explosives from falling into the hands of those who wish to do us harm.”
“Convicted felons and individuals with serious mental health histories are currently prohibited under federal law from purchasing a gun,” said Mayors Against Illegal Guns co-chair and Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino. “And yet, the Terror Gap currently allows terrorist suspects to purchase guns and explosives. This is simply unacceptable, and such a gap endangers the work of dedicated police officers and military personnel nationwide. Congress cannot continue to stall on this important piece of legislation, and our coalition of over 500 mayors will continue to press forward on closing this gap — once and for all.”
“As elected officials are main responsibility is the public safety of the people we serve,” said Mayors Against Illegal Guns member Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of Los Angeles. “The Terror Gap severely hinders our ability to meet our responsibility, and presents a serious threat to the safety of our cities. Allowing terror suspects to buy guns and explosives is inexcusable, and we must work together to assure we close access. That’s why I’ve asked Deputy Chief MacArthur — our city’s leader on counter terrorism issues — to make a direct appeal to the U.S. Senate today about the urgent need to close this glaring gap in our nation’s gun laws.”
Coalition Urges Concerned Citizens to Send a Message to Congress at www.TerrorGap.org
Since its launch last November, Mayors Against Illegal Guns’ advocacy website, www.TerrorGap.org, has generated over 10,000 individual messages urging Congress to take action on the Terror Gap. With today’s push to close the Terror Gap, concerned citizens can join these over 10,000 other Americans to call on Congress to close the gap. Americans overwhelmingly support measures to close the Terror Gap. A 2008 poll found that 89% of Americans support closing the Terror Gap. A 2009 poll by Republican pollster Frank Luntz found that 82% of National Rifle Association members support closing the Terror Gap.
About the Terror Gap
Under current federal law, terror suspects who are barred from flying on planes can legally purchase firearms and explosives. According to the Government Accountability Office, in the past six years, people on the terrorist watch list succeeded in purchasing guns and explosives from licensed dealers 1,119 times. Mayors Against Illegal Guns first highlighted the Terror Gap in September 2007 and has supported legislation introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Representative Peter King (R-NY) to close the gap. The following examples of acts committed by terrorists with guns show the importance of closing the Terror Gap:
- Fort Hood shooting. On November 5, 2009, 13 people were shot and killed and 30 others were wounded by Major Nidal Hasan, a man who had been under investigation by the FBI and was suspected of having ties to terrorists. Hasan purchased his gun after the FBI had investigated his suspicious activities, but the FBI agents who ran the gun background check never communicated with the FBI agents who had investigated Hasan.
- Quantico plot. On July 27, 2009, the FBI arrested seven terror suspects for conspiring to murder U.S. military personnel at the Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia. Over several years, they had amassed an arsenal of assault rifles and more than 26,000 rounds of ammunition. The ringleader, Daniel Patrick Boyd, was under investigation by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, and in recent years, Boyd had traveled to the Middle East to meet with militants.
- Little Rock shooting. On June 1, 2009, Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad opened fire at a military recruiting station in Little Rock, killing one private and wounding another. At the time of the shooting, the FBI was investigating Muhammad after his arrest in Yemen with a fake Somali passport. He was charged with murder and 16 counts of terrorist acts.
- Fort Dix plot. In 2007, six terror suspects were arrested for plotting to attack Fort Dix after trying to buy M-16s, AK-47s, and handguns from an FBI informant. One suspect pled guilty to providing firearms to illegal aliens. The other five were convicted of conspiracy to kill U.S. military personnel.
- Empire State Building murders. On February 23, 1997, Ali Abu Kamal opened fire on the observation deck of the Empire State Building with a handgun purchased from a licensed dealer in Florida, killing one tourist and wounding six before killing himself. A note in his pocket expressed hatred for the United States, Great Britain, Israel, and France.
- Halberstam murder. On March 1, 1994, Rashid Baz shot and killed 16-year old Ari Halberstam on the Brooklyn Bridge. Baz had a machine gun, a 9 mm pistol, and a “street sweeper” shotgun.
- CIA Headquarters attack. On January 25, 1993, Mir Aimal Kasi stopped at a red light near CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia. Shooting with an assault rifle he bought that month from a Chantilly, VA gun dealer, Kasi killed two CIA employees and wounded three others.