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Gun Sale Background Check Proposal Could Go Before Voters

In this Jan. 16, 2013 file photo, an assortment of firearms are seen for sale at Capitol City Arms Supply in Springfield, Ill.
Elaine Thompson
Associated Press

Gun rights advocates say a proposal to require nearly all gun sales and transfers to go through federally licensed dealers and to require buyers to undergo background checks won’t have much of an effect on crime.

Dean Rieck with the Buckeye Firearms Association said what backers call the gun show loophole is largely a myth. He said dealers at gun shows face prosecution if they don’t do background checks. He also cites a study showing 1% of guns used in crimes came from gun shows or personal transfers.

“I really think that these kind of proposals are misleading and they’re not going to have any effect on true crime," Rieck said.

Backers said gun violence has dropped in the 20 states that have strengthened background checks, and that polls show support for that runs as high as 90%.

Ohioans for Gun Safety will gather signatures to put the idea before the legislature, and if lawmakers don’t pass it or they change it, it could go before voters.