Raskin introduces bill to curb federal contracts with ‘bad-apple gun dealers’

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) has introduced legislation aimed at preventing “bad-apple gun dealers” from being involved in federal contracts.

The gun safety bill, titled the Clean Firearm Procurement Act, would require the attorney general to identify and make public a list of the firearms that are “consistently and dramatically overrepresented” in violent crime and crimes, per the bill. The attorney general would then prohibit federal departments and agencies from starting contracts with the dealers of the listed firearms.

Data collected by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) would be used to identify the firearms mostly commonly traced to criminal activity, Raskin’s office told The Hill. The ATF requires federally licensed firearms dealers to report when they have sold 25 or more guns over a single year that are linked to violent crimes within three years of the firearms’ sale.

“The federal government should not be giving lucrative federal contracts to the bad-apple gun dealers who are consistently selling firearms to people who use them in violent crimes or transfer them to people who use them in violent crimes,” Raskin said in a statement Thursday.

Raskin introduced the bill last week, while Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Calif.) will introduce companion legislation in the Senate in the coming weeks, Padilla’s office confirmed.

“Our commonsense legislation aims to combat senseless, preventable gun violence by ensuring that gun dealers follow responsible business practices to keep guns from falling into the wrong hands,” Padilla said.

Raskin, the senior Democrat on the House Oversight and Accountability Committee, has been a longtime advocate of stricter gun violence laws.

Raskin led a roundtable with other House Democrats last November, where lawmakers highlighted the scope of gun violence in the country and examined proposals to curb the epidemic levels of violence.

The roundtable came shortly after a mass shooting in Maine last year that left 18 people dead.

There have been 232 mass shootings so far this year, according to data from the Gun Violence Archive. The highest number of mass shootings in the U.S. happened in 2021, with 689 reported mass shootings, per the data.

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