GOP congressman doesn't want any law to stop him from loaning guns to his friends


Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) is part of a radical extremist minority opposed to universal background checks for guns.

Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) is worried that a universal background check law would mean that he personally cannot hand out guns willy-nilly to any friends who ask him for one.

In response to a news report about a young woman who fired a gun to scare off potential robbers, Crenshaw made an unrelated comment opposing background checks.

"With universal background checks, I wouldn't be able to let my friends borrow my handgun when they travel alone," Crenshaw wrote on Twitter late Tuesday evening. "We would make felons out of people just for defending themselves."

Crenshaw's argument against universal background checks appears to boil down to his having an adamant desire to distribute firearms to anyone he wants to — no matter if the person is a domestic abuser, a potential terrorist, or just any one of his friends who wants to carry a gun. Crenshaw wants the law to allow any and all gun owners to be able to distribute firearms to whoever they want, even if the recipient cannot pass a background check.

Crenshaw's fringe position is far outside the mainstream, since 90% of Americans support the idea of universal background checks, according to an August Fox News poll. Crenshaw's position is even an extremist position among gun owners, 93% of whom support universal background checks, according to the same poll.

Crenshaw made this argument days after a mass shooter in his home state of Texas was able to exploit a loophole in background check laws to obtain a gun and murder seven people. The shooter in Odessa was banned from purchasing guns because of mental illness, but he was still able to buy an assault rifle through a private sale because background checks are not required for such sales.

A House-passed background check bill, which Crenshaw voted against in February, would close that loophole, and even Crenshaw admits it could have prevented the most recent mass shooting massacre.

"This is the 1st mass shooting where a universal background check *possibly* would have prevented him from having a gun, if and only if, they decided to self-enforce that law," Crenshaw wrote on Tuesday.

But Crenshaw still won't back such a law. And in the meantime, potential mass shooters can exploit the loophole Crenshaw wants to keep open.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.