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May 6, 2015

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Sandoval opposes closing gun sales background check loophole


Sam Morris

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval speaks at the Nevada Development Authority’s annual luncheon Friday, Dec. 7, 2012.

Click to enlarge photo

Sen. Justin C. Jones

Click to enlarge photo

Sen. Michael Roberson

Gov. Brian Sandoval said Tuesday that he opposes and would veto a bill requiring private party background checks for gun purchases that Democrats support.

Hours after a legislative hearing concluded for Senate Bill 221 from Sen. Justin Jones, D-Las Vegas, Republicans introduced a last-minute bill on the senate floor to compete with Jones’ background check measure.

The move draws a clear partisan line between Democrats and Republicans with the governor now supporting the bill from Senate Minority Leader Michael Roberson, R-Henderson.

Roberson’s bill, Senate Bill 520, duplicates the provisions in Jones’ bill that would require the courts to more quickly report mental health adjudications to the federal database used for gun purchase background checks.

But the Republican’s measure strips the background check provisions, expands the state’s existing ban on so-called straw gun purchases, and strikes any fees for voluntarily submitting to a background check.

Both bills strengthen reporting requirements for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

Roberson’s bill quickly drew accolades from the governor and Republicans in the Legislature. The state Democratic Party and legislative Democrats followed with press releases criticizing the bill.

Jones introduced his bill on the fourth day of the 120-day legislative session and has been talking to the governor’s office about the bill during the past months. But talks stalled last week with the governor opposing mandatory private party background checks and Jones unwilling to strike what he called the “key” point of the bill.

Jones was displeased with Roberson for introducing the bill on the 114th day of the legislative session.

“It’s politically craven for Sen. Roberson to decide on day 114 that he suddenly cares,” Jones said.

Roberson had earlier offered an amendment to Jones’ bill that was nearly identical to SB 520. That effort failed on a party line vote.

While representatives from the governor’s office said Jones has been “extremely cooperative and forthcoming,” Sandoval was “having a lot of difficulty” with agreeing to the background check provisions of Jones’ bill, said Gerald Gardner, Sandoval’s chief of staff.

Republicans and Democrats alike support the aspect of Jones’ bill that require agencies to report within five days various circumstances under which someone is declared mentally ill. These reports are submitted into a federal database and supporters of Jones’ bill say the five-day reporting deadline will keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill.

Jones said he’s unwilling to divorce that reporting aspect from the two sections of the bill that pertain to private party background checks.

Roberson said he’s trying to save that section of a bill that is otherwise doomed.

“These reporting requirements are important,” Roberson said. “Because SB 221 places additional burdens on the rights of law-abiding citizens, SB221 is not likely to become law. As such, I’ve decided to include those reporting requirements in SB 520.”

But Roberson’s bill also appears to be dead, even though it was just introduced.

“There is currently no plan to hear Roberson’s bill,” said Sen. Tick Segerblom, D-Las Vegas, chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee to which the Senate referred Roberson’s bill.

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  1. Enforce the laws you already have and stop punishing the lawabiding public.

  2. Gov. Brian Sandoval is not very smart if he keeps pushing the Tea Bagger agenda that is very unpopular in America. He opposes a minuscule tax that would fund our schools and he protects the Nevada plutocrats while Nevada is at the bottom in just about everything. The GOP are at record low popularity levels and the fact the Gov. Brian Sandoval stays true to their agenda is hope for some of us that he will be voted out.

  3. "SB 221 places additional burdens on the rights of law-abiding citizens" says Roberson.

    If no background checks are performed, how is the 'law-abiding citizen' status confirmed? How is the 'citizen' status confirmed?

    Nevada will become a magnet for undocumented weapon sales. Companies that depend on education and technology that provide long term incomes and stability will be discouraged from moving here, particularly when their intelligent employees decide to move to a competitive company.

    Technology is dead in Nevada as long as the attitudes of Heller and Sandoval continue.

  4. If Governor Sandoval vetoes this bill, it would have no bearing on mentally disturbed individuals here in Nevada.

    They'd never get a chance to buy a gun.

    Because he buses them out of Nevada regularly. To Los Angeles, Sacramento, and San Francisco. To name a few destinations.

    I am voting him out. I don't care who runs against Sandoval. They don't even have to identify who they are or what they stand for. They got my vote already.

  5. "In a civilized society, those with guns in their hands are the mentally ill ones, by definition."

    airweare -- evidently that definition is solely yours. Your post also shows incredible ignorance, or lacking the experience of having faced a dire life or death situation. This is not "a reasonable and sane world," nor a safe and fair one.

    "Gov. Brian Sandoval is not very smart if he keeps pushing the Tea Bagger agenda that is very unpopular in America."

    mtmfx -- and you're even less smart. By oath of office he's bound to support, protect and defend the Nevada Constitution. Have a look @

    "Fear is the foundation of most governments." - John Adams "Thoughts on Government" (1776)

  6. "Note that it was @ 4:37, before coffee. . ."

    airweare -- no problemo. Like I've never written thoughtless crap before coffee. I'm a bit touchy on the subject, having once faced a violent home invader unarmed with my child in the home. Your post came off like an armchair quarterbacker, so I took the bait. We're cool now.

    "After the coffee things ain't so bad." -- Henry Herbert Knibbs, cowboy poet, d. 1945

  7. The fact that Jones and Segerblom foam at their mouths that an identical bill WITHOUT the backdoor universal background check clause was introduced shows that their main goal was not to keep guns out of the hands of mentally unstable people - they used this false flag to push the same universal background check through that was defeated on national level, because it doesn't make any sense. The Democrats have not given up on trying to create a gun registry - why else would they demand firearms dealers keep a record including serial numbers when law abiding citizens lawfully transfer guns between each other ?

    Clark County already has the grandiose failure that is the handgun registration, which admittedly has not stopped any violence. How many criminals register their guns ? How many criminals will go to gun dealers and submit to background checks ? All this will do is make it harder on law abiding citizens, and the criminals are having a good laugh.

    The voting along party lines has shown that this is purely party politics, even worse than the "comprise" voted on in DC. Thanks to the influx of commiefornians to Nevada to have people like Jones, Segerblom or Horne elected.

  8. @Airweare

    The Founders created the 2nd Amendment to protect our "civilized" society from the barbarians at the gates as well as Tyranny from within.

    Federalist Paper 46 states that the Founders intended the standing federal army would not exceed 1% of the general population and would be kept in check by a militia that represented 20% of the population. This would be 66 million people today.

    SB221 had nothing to do with mental health. It was bad legislation and deserved to fail. It did not require background checks on "sales" it required background checks on "Transfers."

    Any law that says letting a wife touch the husbands firearm without first going to a licensed gun dealer, paying a fee, and getting another background check-EVERY TIME she touches it or you just committed a Felony, is a bad law.

    If someone breaks into your house and your wife is home alone and grabs your gun to defend herself. Oops, you didn't get a licensed gun dealer to do another background check on her (again) for a fee before she grabbed the gun that night regardless of how many background checks may have been done in the past. Both of them just committed felony's.

  9. "SB221 had nothing to do with mental health. It was bad legislation..."

    allbuss64 -- excellent post!

    "Abe Lincoln may have freed all men, but Sam Colt made them equal." -- post-Civil War slogan found @