House set to vote on bills to expand gun background checks

Politics

LOS ANGELES (NewsNation Now) — Two years after similar bills passed the House of Representatives but failed in the Senate, the House will be voting on gun legislation designed to expand background checks on firearms purchases.

“We don’t want to take away people’s guns,” said Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nev.) “We know you use guns for recreation for hunting, for target shooting, but that doesn’t mean that people who shouldn’t have guns can go out and use them in our streets as weapons of war.”

The bills moving through the House are designed to extend current federal background check requirements to gun shows and private sales and also include a proposal from South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn to close the so-called “Charleston loophole.” It was named for the killing of nine people at the Mother Emanuel Church in 2015. It allows firearms purchases to proceed if a background check hasn’t been completed after three days.

“Those two bills today are bad bills. They’re bad for Americans,” said Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.). “They do not impact crime those who would intend to commit crime with a firearm will pay zero attention to it.”

It’s a familiar back and forth on Capitol Hill but now that Democrats control the Senate, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) says that these bills will receive a vote in that body — should they pass the House.

Jonathan Solomon, CEO of Redstone Firearms, says that the gun show restrictions in the bill would have an immediate impact.

“It has not changed too much because where the NRA was lacking there’s others, other entities and groups that have stepped in to help carry on the fight,” said Solomon. “Those who are using gun shows and private party sales are now going to have to be part of the [National Instant Criminal Background Systems].”

NICS is the system in which all of those sales would have to be cleared.

“I’m a gun owner. I believe you respect the rights of gun owners, but there’s also a responsibility if you’re a gun owner to help prevent violence unnecessarily,” said Titus.

As optimistic as Democrats may be, they will still need to reach 60 votes in an evenly divided Senate to make the change.

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