Gun Initiative Gets Big Funding

Washington state voters will be weighing in on Initiative 594 this fall regarding gun purchases and background checks. Big names have added to the campaigns supporting the measure in the past few weeks.

Bill and Melinda Gates recently donated $1 million to the campaign. Paul Allen donated $500,000; and Nick Hanauer has put in $1.4 million. The Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility, sponsoring the bill, made a statement this week to thank the recent donors and the 350,000 supporters who have helped put Initiative 594 on the ballot.

The initiative would make background checks required by licensed dealers when selling all firearms, including at gun shows and from online sales. For private sellers, they would need to meet the prospective buyer at a licensed dealer, who would arrange for a background check. Specific exceptions would still be in place, such as when immediate family members gift firearms, the firearms are antiques or relics, a gun is given temporarily for self-defense, and for guns loaned for approved hunting or sporting activities.