Today, the U.S. House passed a bill to close the Charleston loophole. Currently, federal law permits gun sales to proceed if the purchaser’s background check hasn’t cleared in three days. H.R. 1112 – which passed by a vote of 228 – 198 – will allow law enforcement additional time to investigate would-be gun owners who don’t pass an initial background check.

In 2015, the Charleston loophole permitted Dylann Roof to purchase a firearm; he later used that weapon to murder nine South Carolina churchgoers. In 2016, 4,170 guns were sold to prohibited purchasers simply because the FBI hadn’t completed background checks within three days.

“More than 90 percent of background checks are completed instantly, so this legislation won’t affect law-abiding citizens,” said Rep. Dean. “But if a purchaser doesn’t pass a background check right away, then we need to give law enforcement time to conduct a thorough check,” said Rep. Dean. “Doing anything else means gambling with American lives.”

Rep. Dean was also an original cosponsor of an amendment that will analyze the law’s effects on victims of domestic violence.



For more information, please contact Matt Bieber, Communications Director for Rep. Dean, at or 202-569-2879.