Reed was discussing gun laws during an online White House event titled “Open for Questions: The State of the Union and Reducing Gun Violence”.
A participant commented, “If gun control worked, Chicago would not have had 500 murders last year. Time to target gangs - not guns.”
In his response Reed said, “With respect to Chicago, you know Chicago’s an example--Chicago the city has strong laws but it’s surrounded by suburbs and a state that have much looser laws. So, if you’re a gang member in Chicago you can go to a gun store in the suburbs--have a friend or a girlfriend buy a gun from a gun store.”
“Maybe that person is legally able to buy a gun,” Reed continued, “They can turn around and sell it to you and then you go back into the city of Chicago and wreak all kinds of mayhem with that gun. So guns are the kind of problem that if the national system has a bunch of holes--if the national background check system is just swiss cheese than criminals will find their way into it.”
A recent study on guns seized by Chicago police shows that guns used in crimes come in from other areas. Over 29% were bought in Cook County Ill., the region that includes Chicago. The remaining guns came from other areas of Illinois and surrounding states.