Rep. Peter King, New York Republican, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, California Democrat, have teamed up to press a new law that would deny the sale of guns and explosives to terrorists -- both known and suspected.
But some are worrying: What exactly constitutes a suspect?
The basic idea behind the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act is to keep firearms out of the hands of the same people who are deemed too dangerous to board plans in the United States, and this bill gives the attorney general the power to do just that, The Blaze reported. If passed, the attorney general would be able to halt transfers and sales of firearms and other explosives to those "known or suspected" terrorists, so long as there is "reasonable belief that the prospective transferee may use a firearm in connection with terrorism," The Blaze said.
Mr. King and Ms. Feinstein see the idea as common sense.
"Federal law already prohibits nine categories of dangerous persons from purchasing or possessing firearms, including the mentally ill and criminals," Mr. King said, The Blaze reported. "Yet, after almost 14 years, we still allow suspected terrorists the ability to purchase firearms. It's time for common sense to prevail before it's too late."
Both Ms. Feinstein and Mr. King asserted that those on terror watch lists were still able to buy guns in 2013 and 2014 about 93 percent of the time.
But Second Amendment watchers say the proposal is a breeding ground of government abuse. One complaint: The text of the bill defines suspected terrorists as anyone who is "appropriately suspected," a term that some say is ripe for watery interpretation, The Blaze said.
The bill has 11 Democratic cosponsors in the Senate and 14 Democratic cosponsors in the House. Mr. King is the sole Republican.