In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) introduced this bill to ban “bump stocks” and similar devices:
“For the first time in decades, there is growing bipartisan consensus for sensible gun policy, a polarizing issue that has deeply divided Republicans and Democrats. This common-sense legislation will ban devices that blatantly circumvent already existing law without restricting Second Amendment rights. I’m proud to join Representative Moulton to lead our colleagues in this important first step to address gun violence in our country and show that Congress is capable of working constructively in a bipartisan way to make Americans safer.”
Lead cosponsor Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA) added:
“I am proud to be leading on the only bipartisan effort to take action in the wake of this tragedy. We can always be doing more, but this bill is a crucial starting point. Congress needs to take a serious look, after every crisis, at whether a law consistent with the 2nd Amendment would have prevented it. It is time for Democrats and Republicans alike to find the courage to act. Keeping this conversation going, passing this legislation, and listening to the American people will allow us to will allow us to help make America safer so that we do not need to live in fear of weapons of war being used against our families and friends.”
Gun rights advocates such as the National Rifle Association have called for additional regulation on bump stocks, and others such Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have said it’s “premature to be discussing legislative solutions” after the Las Vegas shooting.
Some lawmakers in Congress have expressed skepticism that legislation will resolve the issue. with Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) tweeted that “Republicans in Congress asking the ATF to create more (and stricter) gun laws from existing laws is a bad idea” and that a bump stock ban “is a red herring that would to bans of other firearms and accessories.”
A column in Reason suggested that other devices such as binary triggers that fire a round on both the trigger’s pull and its release, lighter triggers, and heavier recoil springs could also be covered by this legislation. It also suggested that lawmakers may consider amendments related to magazine sizes or reloading aids given the bill’s broad wording.
This legislation has the support of 32 cosponsors in the House, including 16 Democrats and 15 Republicans.
Of Note: A “bump stock” is a mechanism that allows a semi-automatic rifle to mimic the firing speed of an automatic rifle.
Summary by Eric Revell(Photo Credit: WASR / Creative Commons)