In a post to his Tom Wolf for PA Facebook page, the governor running for reelection announced things, “We can do here in Pennsylvania” including banning bump stocks, preventing anyone convicted of domestic violence from getting a gun and eliminating the “gun show loophole.”
Not entirely clear what Mr. Wolf seeks but federal law prevents the possession of guns by people convicted of domestic violence.
The Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban, usually known as called “the Lautenberg Amendment” (“Gun Ban for Individuals Convicted of a Misdemeanor Crime of Domestic Violence”, Pub.L. 104–208, ), is an amendment to the Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1997, enacted by the 104th United States Congress in 1996, which bans access to firearms by people convicted of crimes of domestic violence. The act is often referred to as “the Lautenberg Amendment” after its sponsor, Senator Frank Lautenberg (D – NJ)
As recently as 2014 the US Supreme Court applied and upheld the law in United States v. Castleman (2014) challenging the application of the law to misdemeanor convictions which did not involve “the use or attempted use of physical force”. In a 9-0 decision, the court ruled Castleman’s conviction of “misdemeanor domestic assault” did qualify as a “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence” under Tennessee law holding that the “physical force” requirement is satisfied by the degree of force that supports a common-law battery conviction — namely, offensive touching”, thereby preventing him from possession of firearms.
President Trump also announced his plans to ban bump stocks administratively telling reporters the day before the Wolf made his Facebook statement saying on March 8, 2018, “Bump stocks — we’re almost finished with the legal papers,” Trump told reporters at the start of a Cabinet meeting at the White House. “Bump stocks are just about finished from the standpoint of getting the legal work done.”
The Pennsylvania Chronicle asked Mr Wolf for further comment asking, “Can you explain what this means? Doesn’t federal law already prevent people convicted of Domestic Violence owning a gun? What is the plan? The president has already said he will be administratively banning bump stocks. What is the proposal for the gun show loophole? Can you show us a link to the plan so we can see it?” We posted our question about 8:40am this morning. We’ve not heard back from the Wolf Campaign as we published the story at 11:30 AM