Backers of background check measure plan big launch today

  • Mon Jun 2nd, 2014 10:27am
  • News

By Jerry Cornfield

One side in Washington’s ballot battle on gun rights is flexing its muscle today.

More than 1,000 supporters of Initiative 594 to require universal background checks on firearm sales will gather at noon in a Seattle hotel to formally begin their campaign.

Carlee Soto, whose sister Victoria Leigh Soto was killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012, is one of the scheduled speakers at the event, according to a press release.

Initiative 594 would expand existing state law to require background checks for online sales and private sales, such as those conducted at gun shows. The measure is pushed by the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility

Voters in November also will decide the fate of Initiative 591.

This measure would prevent the state from enacting a background check law that is stricter than federal law, which requires checks for sales by licensed dealers but not for private transactions such as occur online and at gun shows. It also would block government confiscation of firearms without due process,

This measure is pushed by a coalition of gun rights group led by the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms in Bellevue.