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AG Candidate Propses Fingerprint Recognition for Guns Sold in MA

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Warren Tolman, candidate for Massachusetts Attorney General, has unveiled his proposal to mandate fingerprint recognition technology on all newly manufactured firearms sold in the state.

“Just as your fingerprint can be used to unlock your iPhone, fingerprint technology can be used to ensure only the rightful owner is able to fire a gun,” said Tolman. “This would help take the guns out of the hands of criminals who steal them. It would protect us from the tragedy of children and teens who accidentally or by choice are killed by guns left unsecured in the home. It could even save the lives of law enforcement officers, as 17 percent of police who die in the line of duty are killed by criminals who get access to the officer's gun.”

Tolman's proposal includes using the Commonwealth's strong consumer protection statute to implement this mandate through regulation. Tolman believes states need to lead the charge on gun control due to the “stranglehold” the NRA has on Washington, DC.

Chapter 93A of the Massachusetts General Laws (the consumer protection statute) allows the Attorney General to regulate firearms and further protect the citizens of the Commonwealth from undue harm. This has been used for everything from protecting consumers from fraud to ensuring that toy guns and teddy bears don’t have sharp edges, or tags that could cut or become choking hazards.

“It’s time we use the power of this law to protect the health and safety of our citizens to do what Congress can’t—require gun manufacturers to utilize existing personalized gun technology for all new weapons sold in the Commonwealth,” Tolman stated. “Doing this in Massachusetts could be a critical step on the road to meaningful federal changes.”

Massachusetts Congressman John Tierney proposed a similar concept federally that would require the use of this technology in newly manufactured handguns, with provisions for federally funded retrofitting of existing guns within three years. Despite the efforts of the Massachusetts delegation, Congress, under pressure from the NRA and the gun industry, failed to take action.

“It is clear that the NRA has a stranglehold on Washington, D.C. and that true reform will have to come from the states,” concluded Tolman.


Related Slideshow: The Influence of Gun Money in New England States

New Data from The Sunlight Foundation shows state-by-state breakdowns for donations to groups on both sides of the gun debate. The money went toward candidates, political parties, and political action committees (PACs), but doesn't include donations to independent or so-called “super PACs”.


See how much money went to candidates in each of the New England States in the slides below.

Prev Next

Rhode Island

State Candidates

Control $: 0

Rights $: 229650

Federal Candidates

Control $: 19557

Rights $: 5612

Prev Next


State Candidates

Control $: 2850

Rights $: 20538

Federal Candidates

Control $: 54058

Rights $: 104579

Prev Next


State Candidates

Control $: 8325

Rights $: 51700

Federal Candidates

Control $: 27318

Rights $: 142505

Prev Next


State Candidates

Control $: 4076

Rights $: 56200

Federal Candidates

Control $: 43666

Rights $: 121596

Prev Next


State Candidates

Control $: 0

Rights $: 40330

Federal Candidates

Control $: 4500

Rights $: 7550

Prev Next

New Hampsire

State Candidates

Control $: 1500

Rights $: 22475

Federal Candidates

Control $: 34337

Rights $: 293560


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