In a statement, NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said, "It isn't surprising that, while the investigation is still ongoing and before all the facts are known, Sen. Lautenberg and the gun control lobby have rushed to exploit this sorrowful event."
Under the Brady Law, legal firearms purchases are checked with the FBI's National Instant Background Check System, which runs record checks through the FBI's National Crime Information Center. Part of the NCIC database checks the FBI's Violent Gang and Terrorist Organization File for individuals with gang or terrorism records.
According to a Feb. 13, 2007, Justice Department letter to Lautenberg, "The NICS had made changes in 2004 to its procedures so that counterterrorism agents were consulted about a person listed in the VGTOF seeking to buy a gun, to determine whether those agents have prohibiting information about the individual that is not yet contained in the automated databases."
Arulanandam said, "The focus, rightfully, should be on the integrity of the watch list and the process as a whole."