With Tuesday being National Gun Violence Awareness Day, now might be a good time to delve into Lindsey Graham's opinions on gun control laws. The South Carolina senator entered the race for the 2016 presidential bid from the Republican Party on Monday. He has already put a large emphasis on national security, saying that that he fears the world is “exploding in terror and violence,” according to The New York Times.
Graham has received an A rating from the National Rifle Association, which indicates a pro-gun rights voting record. The NRA endorsed him in his campaign for the South Carolina senate seat, according to the NRA Pro Victory Fund, and he has a long history of voting against gun control. In fact, let's look at a little timeline of Graham's gun control record.
1999: Graham voted in support of a 1999 bill that would decrease the waiting time for buying a firearm from three days to one. When buying a gun at a gun show, a person must undergo a background check that has to be completed in 72 hours. This bill would have decreased that time to 24 hours had it not failed in the House of Representatives, according to the Library of Congress.
2005: Graham continued his support of guns by voting for the 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, according to the United States Senate. The bill was enacted into law and helped prohibit lawsuits against gun manufacturers. He also signed the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, which established a national standard for conceal-and-carry laws.
2007 - 2008: The candidate was the co-sponsor of 2007 legislation that fought gun control in Washington D.C. The D.C. Personal Protection Act would prevent local government from controlling the use of firearms, repeal a ban on semiautomatic weapons, and eliminate criminal punishment for possessing unregistered firearms, according to On The Issues. Graham also was the co-sponsor of 2008 legislation that would allow firearms in national parks, according to Congress.gov.
2009: In addition, Graham supported an amendment to a 2009 budget bill that would allow passengers to check firearms when traveling on Amtrak trains. The bill was supposedly in the best interest of gun owners and sportspeople, but opponents cited examples of violence in the transportation industry.
2013: In 2013, Graham voted against a ban on large capacity ammunition feeding devices, according to the Library of Congress. Such a ban would mean that the magazine on a weapon could not hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Proponents of this rule argued that large magazines allow shooters to kill more people quicker. Adversaries of the ban said that there is no research to suggest that such a law would deter gun violence.
That same year, along with 50 other senators, Graham signed a letter to President Obama that opposed his support of the United Nations' Arms Trade Treaty, which regulated firearm distribution around the world. The letter said the treaty "could hinder the US in fulfilling its strategic, legal, and moral commitments to provide arms to key allies such as Taiwan and Israel."
His voting record shows that Graham certainly supports the Second Amendment and got his A rating from the NRA for a reason.
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