Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., told reporters Wednesday that his committee would not focus on limiting the rights of law-abiding citizens but would rather concentrate on methods of keeping firearms out of the hands of criminals, according to The Hill. In that regard, Goodlatte echoed the concern of many gun enthusiasts that universal background checks lead to a national firearm registry.
“The fact of the matter is, we need to look at all of these issues, but I think where we’re going to find the ability to produce legislation is going to be focused on two things primarily,” the chairman said at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast. “One is improving the background check system, but universal background checks I do not think will be part of that.”
He also expressed opposition to an assault weapons ban. That and a universal background check system are central to both the president’s proposal and that of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.
The Hill’s Russell Berman wrote:
A bipartisan group in the Senate is working on a proposal to create a universal background check system, and some Republicans in both chambers have warmed to the idea. But the National Rifle Association is aggressively opposing the push on the grounds that such a move would be unworkable without keeping records on all private gun owners.
Goodlatte voiced opposition to a registry, arguing that it was not comparable to other items that currently require registration, such as cars.
“Cars are not mentioned in the Bill of Rights. Firearms are,” Goodlatte said.
Read more at The Hill.