PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — Question 3 on the Maine ballot aims to prevent bad guys from getting guns. It reads: "Do you want to require background checks prior to the sale or transfer of firearms between individuals not licensed as firearms dealers, with failure to do so punishable by law and with some exceptions for family members, hunting, self-defense, lawful competitions and shooting range activity?"
The law is largely parallel to and funded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. "We know background checks work," said Bill Harwood an attorney with Verrill and Dana who is a member of "Maine Gun Safety Coalition" is promoting the referendum advanced by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
David Trahan of the Sportsman's Alliance of Maine has risen in opposition. He is fearful that the new law would create pitfalls for hunters and shooters. Their interpretation of the law would make it illegal to loan a firearm outside the family. A friend could not loan a long time friend a hunting rifle without going to a gun dealer, filling out a background check and paying a fee of about $30. When the gun was returned, the same process would have to be followed.
Trahan is rallying sportsmen and sport shooters in an attempt to defeat Question 3. Spending on the "Yes" side of the Question is Bloomberg driven and amounts to more than four million dollars. Most of the "No" money has come from the National Rifle Association and amounts to one million dollars.
Both sides say the election will be close on November 8th and that the battle over gun control will continue long after.