From NY Post: Nearly two dozen Democratic senators, including Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, introduced a bill on Wednesday to ban the sale of military-style assault weapons and bump stock devices like the one used in the Las Vegas massacre, saying it “will begin removing the weapons of war on our streets.”
“We’re introducing an updated assault weapons ban for one reason: so that after every mass shooting with a military-style assault weapon, the American people will know that a tool to reduce these massacres is sitting in the Senate, ready for a debate and a vote,” said a statement released by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif).
The legislation calls for a ban on the “sale, manufacture, transfer and importation of 205 military-style assault weapons by name,” but allows owners to keep their existing weapons.
The measure also proposes to ban “bump-fire stocks and other devices that allow semi-automatic weapons to fire at fully automatic rates.”
The madman who opened fire on an open-air concert in Las Vegas last month outfitted his weapons with a bump-fire stock that allowed him to turn his semi-automatic rifles into rapid-fire weapons and spray thousands of rounds in the span of about 10 minutes. He killed 58 people and wounded hundreds more in the deadliest mass shooting in US history.
Five weeks later, a deranged Air Force veteran opened fire on a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, using an AR-15-style assault rifle. He emptied 15 magazines and killed 26 congregants.
Democrats called on their Republican counterparts to begin a discussion on gun violence after the killings, but GOP lawmakers and President Trump responded it was “too soon” after the tragedy and would be “disrespectful to the dead.”
Trump initially said the church shooting “isn’t a gun situation” it is “a mental health problem” then rejected calls for stepped up background checks.
Asked about “extreme vetting” for gun buyers while on an overseas trip this week in South Korea, he said: “If you did what you’re suggesting, there would have been no difference three days ago and you might not have had that very brave person who happens to have a gun or a rifle in his trunk.”
The Democrats’ legislation also calls for a ban of assault weapons that take a “detachable ammunition magazine and has a pistol grip, a forward grip, a barrel shroud, a threaded barrel or a folding or telescoping stock.”
It says 2,200 types of guns used for “hunting, household defense or recreational purposes” will be exempted.
“This bill won’t stop every mass shooting, but it will begin removing these weapons of war from our streets,” the statement reads. “Yes, it will be a long process to reduce the massive supply of these assault weapons in our country, but we’ve got to start somewhere.”
Feinstein and the Democrats introduced a bill in 2013 with similar provisions after the killings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012 but it was defeated in the Senate by a 60-40 vote.