Dozens Testify at Hearing on Bill Requiring Background Check on Gun Sales

Jan 19, 2017

Representative Katherine Rogers explains her background check bill.
Credit NHPR/Hannah McCarthy

New Hampshire lawmakers heard hours of testimony Thursday on a bill that would require background checks for commercial firearm sales.

Representative Katherine Rogers,the main sponsor on the bill, says it’s designed to fill perceived loopholes in New Hampshire gun regulations.

"The current system’s loophole is exploited by criminals," Rogers says, "who can avoid background checks by purchasing firearms from unlicensed private sellers, often at gun shows, or through anonymous online transactions."

Testimony on the bill Thursday ranged from tearful accounts of gun-related domestic violence, to concern that the bill is a slippery slope to second amendment violation. Alan Rice, Director of the New Hampshire Firearm Coalition, saw extreme restriction in the bill’s language.

"Representative Rogers does not want young people," says Rice, "or anyone else for that matter, to own, possess, or use firearms."

It's just one of dozens of arguments legislators will have to consider before they vote.