Following a string of high-profile mass shootings, the familiar debate over gun rights in America has once again reached a fever pitch. This time, however, a bipartisan group of lawmakers actually found enough common ground to pass a bill that might prevent a future tragedy.
Of course, that compromise was not good enough for gun-grabbing Democrats who want to take firearms out of the hands of law-abiding Americans. That fact was obvious in the recent announcement that Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are preparing to push for a complete ban on so-called assault weapons.
Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) is spearheading the effort despite the fact that there is not enough support on Capitol Hill to pass such a sweeping measure.
Although the proposed bill would not require Americans who currently own such weapons to turn them in, it does call for prohibiting future sales of a specific class of semi-automatic rifles nationwide. Specifically, Cicilline described guns with a detachable magazine plus any of several other accessories – a pistol grip, a threaded barrel, a folding or detachable stock, or a grenade launcher, among others – as those that would be banned if the bill somehow becomes law.
He has convinced 211 fellow Democrats to sign on to the bill, but it has no GOP support.
The judiciary panel is set to address the matter next week, at which point it is expected to fizzle out in response to unanimous opposition by Republicans. Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) indicated that passing the bill is not the Democratic Party’s primary objective. Instead, he said the party hopes that pursuing an assault weapons ban will further emphasize the issue of gun control ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.
For his part, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) chastised his colleagues across the aisle for engaging in a partisan stunt, adding: “You’ve watched it time and again in the House. That’s all they’re going to do is play politics.”
Earlier this month, President Joe Biden reiterated his support for an assault weapons ban, claiming that America is “awash in weapons of war” and the federal government must step in to remove them nearly 20 years after a previous ban expired.
“I am determined to ban these weapons again and high-capacity magazines that hold 30 rounds and let mass shooters fire hundreds of bullets in a matter of minutes,” he said. “I’m not going to stop until we do it.”
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), who was instrumental in advancing the recent bipartisan bill, made it clear that he is not interested in pursuing any further action on the matter.
Days after Biden’s recent remarks, a reporter asked the Texas Republican if his party would be open to discussing additional gun control measures.
“No, we’re done,” he replied.