Background Checks | St. Louis Public Radio

Background Checks

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Oct. 8, 2013 - St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley says a recently passed ordinance mandating background checks for nominees to the St. Louis County Board of Police Commissioners is slowing down the process of filing up the depleted panel.

Earlier this summer, Dooley nominated Democrat Freddy J. Clark and Republican Dave Spence to serve on the five-person police board.

Tenele Griffon waits Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2018, to have fingerprints taken for a background check in order to start a new job driving school buses in Hazelwood. Griffon and other educators waited more than six hours to have the mandatory checks completed.
Ryan Delaney | St. Louis Public Radio

Tenele Griffon rested his head on an umbrella as he sat on a wooden bench at the end of a line of people in DuBourg Hall at Saint Louis University. He was supposed to start his new job as a bus driver in Hazelwood Monday. Instead, he spent the first half of the week trying to complete his mandatory background check.

Last week Griffon went to the places that used to record fingerprints, only to learn they no longer had a state contract. He arrived at the only location in St. Louis fingerprinting people for background checks shortly after 10 a.m., only to find dozens of people ahead of him in line.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, May 13, 2013 - Two Democratic U.S. senators condemned the Internal Revenue Service's targeting of conservative groups for stricter review as "un-American" and "absolutely unacceptable."

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill added that high-ranking IRS officials should be fired if they knew what was happening.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: WASHINGTON – In a severe blow to efforts to tighten the nation’s gun control laws, the U.S. Senate on Wednesday failed to advance a bipartisan compromise on background checks that had been regarded as key to passing a wider gun bill. Proposals to ban assault weapons and limit the size of ammunition magazines also were defeated.

With Vice President Joe Biden in the chair, the Senate’s 54-46 vote in favor of the background check amendment – sponsored by U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., and three others – fell short of the 60 votes needed. (This Washington Post article explains why 60 votes were required.)

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 15, 2013 - (The following is a letter recently sent) I am writing regarding the National Rifle Association’s position on several firearms-related proposals under consideration in the Senate.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 10, 2013 - On Thursday, the Senate voted 68 - 31 to rebuff initial delaying tactics and clear the way for debate on the gun legislation. U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., voted against moving forward. Voting with the majority were U.S. Sens. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., Mark Kirk, R-Ill., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill. 

Blunt, McCaskill At Odds Over Background Check Bill

Apr 10, 2013
Gage Skidmore | Flickr

Missouri’s U.S. Senators are divided on a bill that would expand background checks to more gun buyers. Republican Blunt has indicated that he does not support the bill, while Democrat Claire McCaskill says she will.

On a conference call with reporters on Wednesday, McCaskill said Congress needs to do something to try to prevent mass shootings.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 9, 2013 - WASHINGTON – With speeches, ads and new vote ratings, advocates of new laws to stem gun violence are trying to turn up the pressure this week on GOP lawmakers who are trying to block action on gun control.

On Tuesday, Mayors Against Illegal Guns – a group backed by funding from New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg – put congressional offices on notice that it would start issuing a “scorecard, assigning members a letter grade on their gun policy records.”

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Jan. 16, 2013 -  WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama’s ambitious proposals to curb gun violence were met Wednesday by praise from liberal Democrats, sharp GOP criticism – and indications of a pitched battle on Capitol Hill.

Those divisions were reflected in the St. Louis region’s U.S. House delegation, with U.S. Reps. Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, Ann Wagner, R-Ballwin, and Bill Enyart, D-Belleville, staking out differing positions on solutions to gun violence.

A gun show in Houston, Texas, in 2007.
M Glasgow | Flickr

A St. Louis County lawmaker plans to file legislation that would require background checks on anyone who buys a firearm at a gun show.

State Representative Stacey Newman (D, Richmond Heights) says her proposal would close the so-called “gun show loophole” in Missouri.

“Right now, federal background checks are only done through licensed dealers," Newman said.  "That exempts gun shows where people can purchase unlimited amounts of weapons, including assault weapons.”