Gun Law to Cover Buying, Selling and Legal Class, iPolitics Says — Canada’s Liberal government will present its new law to further restrict gun rights on March 20, iPolitics reported today, saying the bill will affect buying, selling and legal classifications of firearms.

The legislation will expand background checks for people applying for licences to buy so-called “Restricted” firearms, such as handguns and AR-15 rifles, the news website said today, without saying where it got the information.

Shooting is one of Canada’s most popular activities, and more adults have gun licences than the number who play hockey.

The Liberals said in their 2015 election campaign that they planned new restrictions on lawful hunters, sport shooters and gun collectors in what could be Canada’s first anti-gun law since they passed the Firearms Act in 1995.

Party members control parliament and government, suggesting they will be able to pass any new measures they want. It could take 12 months or more before the proposals are reviewed, approved and become law. The next election is in October 2019.

The new bill will affect the classification of so-called “Restricted” and “Prohibited” firearms, iPolitics said. It will make stores keep records of all gun sales, the report said, something that retailers in many provinces already have to do.

The official notice of the proposed legislation was published last night as an agenda item for March 19, with an empty web link to “An Act to amend certain Acts and Regulations in relation to firearms.”

Parliamentary rules require a notice at least 48 hours before a bill is discussed in the House of Commons and forbid government staff from revealing the contents.

“With the bill on notice, it’s impossible for me to discuss the details.” Dan Brien, the director of communications for Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale, told by telephone today.

The Firearms Act banned many of the world’s most popular firearms and made it a crime to have guns without a licence. Owning one legally requires taking an RCMP-approved safety course, passing written and practical exams, obtaining a licence card and passing a daily background check by the national police. Failing to renew a licence for legally owned guns can lead to 10 years in prison.

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The most important part of gun rights isn’t “gun,” it’s “rights.”