• 4 Up-4 Down! Senate Destroys 4 Gun Control Bills

    The Senate crushed dreams of anti-gun supporters by sending to the garbage can all four new gun bills presented in the wake of Orlando.

    Well done Senate.

    From Reason.com:

    The Senate this afternoon rejected four different gun bills supposedly intended to help deal with future Orlando-like mass shootings; two related to the background check systems operation, two related to keeping terror suspects from getting guns. Procedurally, all of the bills needed 60 supporting votes to stay alive for now.

    Jacob Sullum explained the for-now failed bills related to the terror watch list in detail earlier today. One, from California’s reliably anti-gun Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D), would, as Sullum reported, allow the attorney general to deny a gun sale if, in Feinstein’s bill’s language, the A.G. “determines, based on the totality of the circumstances, that the transferee represents a threat to public safety based on a reasonable suspicion that the transferee is engaged, or has been engaged, in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism, or providing material support or resources thereof.”

    A similar bill from Republican Sen. John Cornyn (Texas), as Sullum wrote, would have “allow[ed] the Justice Department to delay the transfer of a gun to someone who is ‘a known or suspected terrorist’ or who has been ‘the appropriate subject of a terrorism investigation within the last five years.’ The government then has three days to persuade a judge there is probable cause to believe the suspect is involved in terrorism.”

    Cornyn’s version got 53 “for” votes today, again not enough to proceed.

    Sullum also discussed a sort of compromise bill in the works on the terror suspect matter from Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), which has not yet been voted on.

    Connecticut Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy, one of the leaders of the 15-hour attempt to talk his colleagues into acting on further gun restrictions last week, tells Politico that “I’m going to be turning my attention to the November election. I’m going to take some of my energy and help make sure that people who cast the wrong vote don’t come” back to the Senate.

    Two bills related to background check system were also blocked from proceeding for now, one a standard attempt to universalize background checks for every gun sale, not just one’s by licensed federal gun dealers. That one saw a 44-56 vote against today.

    Another background check bill out of the office of Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), which would spend more on the national background check system and encourage more thorough reporting on those in the mental health system to prevent them from legally obtaining guns, also failed today, 53-47.


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