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REP. ROSEN INTRODUCES BIPARTISAN BILL TO CLOSE LOOPHOLE IN MILITARY JUSTICE SYSTEM THAT ALLOWS CONVICTED DOMESTIC ABUSERS TO BUY GUNS

December 14, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Today, Congresswoman Jacky Rosen (NV-03) introduced the bipartisan Military Domestic Violence Reporting Enhancement Act alongside Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS). H.R. 4639 would prevent convicted domestic abusers from purchasing firearms by making domestic violence a criminal offense, closing a dangerous loophole in the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ):  

“Congress has a responsibility to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them and take meaningful action to prevent the senseless gun violence that has claimed so many innocent lives,” said Congresswoman Rosen. “This bill will help close the dangerous loophole in the Uniform Code of Military Justice that allowed a gunman in Sutherland Springs to slip through criminal background databases, purchase assault rifles, and kill 26 innocent people at a church. I am proud to work across the aisle on this commonsense legislation and will continue to push for solutions that prevent dangerous weapons from getting into the wrong hands.”

“I’ve long been a strong supporter of the 2nd amendment and believe in the fundamental right to legally own a firearm,” said Congresswoman Jenkins. “However, the way domestic violence is classified in the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) amounts to a loophole that can lead people, who should have been convicted of domestic violence, to unlawfully being allowed to purchase firearms. Closing this loophole will help in preventing senseless tragedies like the one in Sutherland Springs, TX. This is why I am working in a bi-partisan fashion with Congresswoman Rosen (D-NV) in hopes of preventing another tragic loss of life from occurring.”

“It is long past time for Congress to take meaningful action to address gun violence as a public health crisis,” said Nevada Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence Executive Director, Susan Meuschke. “Nevada is among the deadliest states for women in terms of gun-related homicides. This policy will help address a dangerous loophole and could save lives in Nevada and across the country. I applaud Congresswoman Rosen for working across the aisle to introduce this legislation in the House." 


BACKGROUND: Currently, under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, a domestic violence conviction is categorized as assault because an article for domestic violence does not exist. Under federal law, an individual convicted of domestic violence cannot legally purchase a firearm, while some convicted of assault are still able to. The Military Domestic Violence Reporting Enhancement Act would make Domestic Violence an independent crime under the UCMJ and would mandate that convictions of domestic violence at Court Martial must be reported, as is the case under federal law.

Congresswoman Jacky Rosen is a member of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus and one of 10 original Democratic co-sponsors of the bipartisan Curbelo-Moulton bill to ban bump stocks.
 

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