[Ed. – This will be completely unenforceable on multiple levels. The “gun show” distinction is a red herring; licensed dealers have to run background checks on all their sales, including those at gun shows. It’s transactions between private citizens who are NOT licensed dealers that can be made — often but by no means always at gun shows — without background checks. Those transactions will get made whether there are gun shows or not. Seeking to effectively criminalize them — as Washington state has recently tried to do — won’t make anyone safer.]
Requiring background checks for weapons sold at gun shows might not have had any effect on Wednesday’s shooting in San Bernardino, in which 14 people were killed. So far, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has determined that two of the weapons used in the assault were legally purchased at a gun shop in Corona.
But White House officials and their allies continue to see expanding the background check system as the most promising avenue to reduce at least some of the deaths caused by guns.
Federal law requires gun stores and other regular sellers to get federal licenses and conduct background checks. But the law offers an exemption to hobbyists, collectors and others who sell guns but are not formally considered to be gun dealers.
Thousands of guns are sold in those private sales every year, a volume that Obama believes helps to fuel what he sees as an epidemic of shootings.