Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., in an attempt to prevent local newspapers from publishing lists of gun owners in a given area, convinced 66 of his colleagues to support an amendment that cuts funding for state and local governments if they release the information.
“If a state or local government releases private information on gun owners — which we know has happened — then that state or local government will lose part of its funding that comes from the Federal Government,” Barrasso said while arguing for the amendment. “This includes private information on individuals who have licenses to purchase, possess, or carry firearms.”
Barrasso was prompted by The Journal News‘ decision to publish an interactive map of gun owners in two New York counties this past December, a disclosure that preceded one attempted robbery and another burglary that involved the theft of the weapons at the house.
“The timing of the disclosure and the robberies clearly appears to be more than just a coincidence,” Barrasso said. “These criminals had the names, addresses, and a map. That is all they needed. And where did they get it? Because of the release of the information by the government. This, to me, was an irresponsible disclosure.”
The amendment passed, 67-30.