What To Know Today
The latest on the congressional gun reform negotiations. Republican Senator John Cornyn of Texas told CNN that two measures are holding senators back from reaching a deal before the July 4 holiday: a provision that would offer states financial incentives for adopting red flag laws, and another that would extend lifetime gun bans to abusive dating partners. Right now, only current and former spouses, cohabitants, family members, and co-parents are banned from possessing guns after a domestic violence conviction, a gap in the law known as the “boyfriend loophole.” It’s a big gap: Half of all intimate partner violence is perpetrated by dating partners. In his latest dispatch, Chip Brownlee digs deeper into the Republican opposition to both closing the boyfriend loophole and the widespread adoption of extreme risk protection orders.
Justice Department slaps Buffalo shooting suspect with hate crime charges. Federal prosecutors filed 26 charges against the accused gunman, including 10 counts of a hate crime resulting in death and 10 counts of use of a firearm to commit murder. He was also charged with three counts of use and discharge of a firearm during a violent crime, which carries the possibility of the death penalty. Prosecutors said the teen left a note for his family saying he committed the rampage out of concern for “the future of the white race.” Last month a grand jury in New York indicted him on murder, attempted murder, and domestic terrorism charges.
The FBI didn’t release crime estimates for the fifth straight quarter because not enough agencies reported data. The bureau only produces quarterly national estimates when at least 60 percent of law enforcement agencies voluntarily submit data to its reporting system. Last week, the FBI reported that only 56 percent of agencies (10,578 out of 18,769) contributed information in the last quarter. The failure to meet the threshold comes more than a year after the FBI switched to a new system. Criminologists say NIBRS, the new system, will eventually provide more detailed crime estimates, but the switchover has been sluggish and far fewer agencies are using it.
Fact-check: Yes, there were guns at the Capitol on January 6. Right-wing news personalities are pushing the discredited notion that rioters were unarmed that day, so it can’t be called an “insurrection.” Newsweek debunks both claims, explaining that an insurrection doesn’t require guns – which were, in fact, present at the Capitol, according to criminal complaints. That echoes Trace reporting that identified 13 people hit with illegal gun possession charges stemming from the riot.
Google bans gun ads — but still makes money from them. According to a ProPublica analysis of digital advertising data, American gun manufacturers use Google’s ad systems to place more than 100 million ads each year on websites and apps. The company earns a fee for each ad view. Because the ads are sold by ad exchanges, and Google is only facilitating their placement, the arrangement doesn’t technically violate the tech giant’s ban on gun ads. “Google makes money while looking the other way,” a digital advertising consultant said.
Lawmakers in Rhode Island sent three gun reform bills to the governor. The measures raise the minimum age to buy long guns to 21, ban high-capacity magazines, and prohibit the open carry of long guns in public. After their passage, gun rights activists in the gallery chanted “vote them out.” Governor Dan McKee, a Democrat, has said he will sign the bills.
Police killed a man who opened fire at a Texas summer camp. At least 250 children and staffers were in a sports complex in the Dallas suburb of Duncanville on Monday when the man entered the building with a handgun and exchanged words with a staffer. Police responded in two minutes. They did not disclose a motive.
11 — the number of murders committed by anti-abortion activists from 1977 to 2020, all but one of which was gun-related. Anti-abortion activists are also responsible for 26 attempted murders and 956 threats of harm or death during that period. [HuffPost]