Procedurally, the bill still has a number of hurdles to clear in the Senate — it faces two more key votes to smash a filibuster and then final passage — but it has the leader’s backing. Senate Minority Mitch McConnell, and Tuesday’s vote drew more than the minimum 10 Republican votes that will be needed to defeat a filibuster.
It could move through the Senate by the end of the week, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said, and then go to the House of Representatives.
If passed, it would be the most significant new federal legislation to address gun violence since the expiration of the 10-year assault weapons ban in 1994 – although it will not ban no guns and fall far short of what Democrats and polls show most Americans want. see.
“As the author of the Brady background check bill, which passed in 1994, I am delighted that, for the first time in nearly 30 years, Congress is back on track to take meaningful steps to address gun violence,” Schumer said.
The bill includes millions of dollars for mental health, school safety, crisis intervention programs and incentives for states to include minors’ records in the nation’s instant criminal background check system.
It also makes significant changes to the process when someone between the ages of 18 and 21 goes to buy a gun and closes the so-called boyfriend loophole, a major victory for Democrats, who have fought for a decade to that.
Aides estimated the measure would cost about $15 billion, which Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut, the top Democratic negotiator, said would be fully paid for.
The legislation lacks far more powerful proposals that President Joe Biden supports and that Democrats have pushed unsuccessfully for years, derailed by Republican opposition.
These include banning assault weapons or raising the minimum age to buy them, banning high-capacity magazines, and requiring background checks for virtually all gun sales.
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Yet after 10 African-American shoppers were killed last month in Buffalo, New York, and 19 children and two teachers died days later in Uvalde, Texas, Democrats and some Republicans decided that this time, measured measures were preferable to the usual congressional reaction to such horrors—traffic jams.