Governor Jack Markell (D) unleashed a five-point plan to subject Delaware to sweeping gun control measures in January, as reported by NRA-ILA. Today, the latest of his measures was filed as House Bill 35. HB 35 has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee which has scheduled a hearing for it on Wednesday, March 13 at 1:00 pm in the House Majority Hearing Room in Legislative Hall and public comment will be accepted. Please contact members of the House Judiciary Committee IMMEDIATELY, and go to Dover on Wednesday to testify against HB 35.
HB 35 would criminalize private transfers of firearms by requiring that a criminal history background check be performed in connection with the sale or transfer of all firearms. Background checks would be performed by licensed firearms dealers, who would be required to maintain records of such background checks in accordance with state and federal law.
Background checks would not be required in private party transactions (1) in which the buyer or transferee is a member of the seller or transferor’s immediate family (parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, sibling or spouse); (2) involving antique firearms and certain replicas; (3) involving the return by a licensed pawnbroker of a firearm to the person from whom it was received; or (4) involving qualified active duty and retired law-enforcement officers. Anyone who violated this would be guilty of a class A misdemeanor for a first offense and a class G felony for any subsequent offense. Concealed carry license holders would NOT be exempted.
While there might be exceptions, make no mistake. This measure is the first step toward the criminalization of all private firearm transfers. This system can only be enforced with gun registration. And, as we know from experiences in California, Australia and Canada, gun registration enables gun confiscation—only from honest citizens—since criminals are not subject to registration nor do they submit to criminal investigations.