04/10/2013 11:50 am ET Updated Apr 10, 2013

Background Check Deal Reached By Dem, GOP Senators

Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) announced a deal on background checks for gun sales during a press conference on Wednesday.

The background check deal would expand the system to cover all commercial sales, such as at gun shows and online, the AP reports.

Two Senate aides with knowledge of the negotiations broke news of the deal Wednesday morning. The AP reports:

WASHINGTON — Two pivotal senators have announced a bipartisan deal on expanding background checks to more gun buyers. The agreement could build support for President Barack Obama's drive to curb firearms violence.

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Republican Sen. Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania said their agreement would help keep firearms from criminals and the mentally ill.

The checks would now apply to commercial sales, such as transactions at gun shows and online. The sales would have to be channeled through licensed firearms dealers, who would have to keep records of the transactions.

Manchin said that since the slayings of school children and educators in Newtown, Conn., both sides in the gun debate must find common ground. Toomey said he considers expanded background checks common sense, not gun control.

This story is developing and has been updated.