Erick Erickson: Toomey’s background check amendment has a serious flaw

Toomey and Manchin came out earlier today to discuss their compromise amendment on universal background checks. They didn’t get into the level of specificity I wanted so I’ve been holding out to see some analysis on the amendment. What they basically said in their meeting this morning was that gun sales at gun shows would now have to go through background checks. My problem is I thought they already did. If you sale any guns made past 1898 or so you have to have a FFL and thus you have to perform background checks. But they also claim that private sales (you and your neighbor) are excluded from these checks. Does that stand true at gun shows too?

Erick Erickson spoke with someone familiar with the legislation who pointed out something that they see as a big problem with this amendment. If this report is true, I totally agree:

The proposal will allow a doctor to add a patient to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) without ever telling the patient he or she has been added.

There would be no due process requirement. Not all doctors will be able to do it with the same ease, but many will. Knowing a doctor could add him to a federal database as mentally ill without his knowledge could potentially dissuade a patient from going to the doctor in the first place to get help.

Worse, if the doctor does so and makes a mistake, the patient would have to actively work through the system to get himself removed — guilty before being proven innocent. In some states, should a doctor flag you as having mental illness without your knowledge, you may very well see the state come collect your previously purchased guns.

Activist mental health providers will probably be overly aggressive in adding people to the list. Give it five years in liberal areas and people who believe in the physical resurrection of Christ will probably get automatic entry onto the list.

You’ve got to be kidding me. Erickson is right, this has liberal activism and even extortion written all over it. Even if doctors were required to tell you, it still has serious issues.

One other note. Toomey said he was working on this amendment because he was worried nothing would get done. Seriously? Perhaps Toomey is worried about his own reelection but to make a statement like that just proves to me that he doesn’t get it.

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