Supporters Submit Signatures for Background Check Initiative - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Supporters Submit Signatures to Qualify Background Check Initiative

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OLYMPIA, Wash. - Advocates seeking to expand the background checks on gun sales in Washington state have turned in more than 250,000 signatures. 

That's the first batch of petitions they plan to submit before a January deadline to qualify the initiative to the Legislature. 

Supporters brought 11 boxes of petitions for Initiative 594 to the Secretary of State's election's office on Wednesday morning, many of them wearing "Yes on 594" stickers.

The plan would require background checks for online sales and private transactions, for example, those that occur at gun shows. The checks would be conducted at federally licensed firearm dealers, where people already must undergo such scrutiny before purchasing a new weapon.

An initiative requires at least 246,372 valid signatures of registered state voters to be certified. The secretary of state's office however, suggests at least 320,000 signatures as a buffer in case any of them are duplicates or invalid.