House panel taking up gun bill in wake of mass shootings

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House is starting to put its stamp on gun law in line with mass shootings in Texas and New York by way of 18-year-old assailants who used semi-automatic rifles to kill 31 other folks, together with 19 youngsters.

The House Judiciary Committee will cling a listening to Thursday to advance law that might lift the age restrict for getting a semi-automatic centerfire rifle from 18 to 21. The invoice would make it a federal offense to import, manufacture or possess large-capacity magazines and would create a grant program to shop for again such magazines. It additionally builds at the govt department’s ban on bump-stock gadgets and so-called ghost weapons which can be privately made with out serial numbers.

The Democratic law, known as the Protecting Our Kids Act, was once briefly added to the legislative docket after ultimate week’s college capturing in Uvalde, Texas. A vote by way of the overall House may come as early as subsequent week.

With Republicans just about in lockstep of their opposition, the House motion will most commonly be symbolic, serving to position lawmakers on document about gun keep an eye on forward of this 12 months’s elections. The Senate is taking a special path, with a bipartisan staff striving towards a compromise on gun protection law that may win sufficient GOP make stronger to develop into regulation.

But Rep. Jerrold Nadler of New York, the Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, defends the proposals as being well-liked by Americans. He says it’s time for Congress to behave.

“You say that it is too soon to take action? That we are ‘politicizing’ these tragedies to enact new policies?” Nadler stated in ready remarks for Thursday’s listening to acquired by way of The Associated Press. “It has been 23 years since Columbine. Fifteen years since Virginia Tech. Ten years since Sandy Hook. Seven years since Charleston. Four years since Parkland and Santa Fe and Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.”

He added: “Too soon? My friends, what the hell are you waiting for?”

Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, the score Republican at the committee, instructed Fox News he’ll press his GOP colleagues to oppose the invoice.

“I’m going to do everything I can to encourage my colleagues to oppose this … hodgepodge of bills that I don’t think would have made one difference in tragedies that we’ve seen recently,” Jordan stated.

Any legislative reaction to the Uvalde and Buffalo, New York, shootings should get in the course of the calmly divided Senate, the place make stronger from a minimum of 10 Republicans can be had to advance the measure to a last vote. A bunch of senators has been running at the back of the scenes this week in hopes of discovering a consensus.

Ideas underneath dialogue come with expanded background tests for gun purchases and incentivizing red-flag rules that let members of the family, college officers and others to enter courtroom and protected an order requiring the police to take hold of weapons from other folks thought to be a danger to themselves or others.

The broader bipartisan staff of just about 10 senators met once more Wednesday — “a very productive call,” stated Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., in an interview.

“There’s a tenor and tone, as well as real substantive discussion that seems different,” he stated.

Blumenthal has been running with a Republican member of the gang, Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, on an offer to ship assets to the states for red-flag rules. He stated he was once “excited and encouraged” by way of the reaction from the gang.

“It really is time for our Republican colleagues to put up or shut up,” Blumenthal stated. “We’ve been down this road before.”

President Joe Biden was once requested Wednesday if he was once assured Congress would take motion on gun law.

“I served in Congress for 36 years. I’m never confident, totally,” Biden stated. “It depends, and I don’t know. I’ve not been in on the negotiations as they’re going on right now.”


Associated Press writers Lisa Mascaro and Zeke Miller contributed to this file.

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