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Monday, July 4, 2022

Senate passes bipartisan gun safety bill a month after Uvalda shooting

WASHINGTON. On Thursday, the Senate approved a bipartisan bill aimed at curbing gun violence that went into effect a month after a horrific mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, increased pressure on a congressional response.

Fifteen Republicans joined all Democrats in supporting the measure. The House of Representatives is expected to pass the bill on Friday and send it to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature.

The law, entitled the Bipartisan Safe Communities Act, includes modest restrictions on the acquisition of firearms, as well as funding to support mental health care and school safety. This is the result of a bipartisan compromise after weeks of negotiations led by Senators Chris Murphy (D-Connecticut) and John Cornyn (D-Texas).

The measure strengthens background checks on people under 21, encourages states to pass “red flags” to help remove guns from the hands of people deemed a danger to themselves or others, and bans romantic partners convicted of domestic violence who are unmarried. on your victim from getting firearms.

However, it does not include the broader restrictions that gun control advocates seek, such as a ban on assault weapons, raising the minimum age for purchasing semi-automatic rifles to 21, mandatory home safe keeping rules, or requiring background checks for online and offline sales. stores. gun shows.

However, it is the most important federal gun law in decades. Democrats and pro-gun control groups hailed it as a sign of progress after years of congressional stagnation in the fight against gun violence.

“This will be the most important piece of legislation against gun violence that Congress has passed in three decades,” Murphy said ahead of the vote. “This bill also has a chance to prove to the weary American public that democracy is not so broken that it can rise to the moment.”

Cornyn, who was greeted with a chorus of hoots at his state party convention last Friday, acknowledged that Republicans needed to step outside their comfort zone. But he said “the potential we have to save lives is worth any concessions we could make during the negotiations.”

“I do not believe in inaction in the face of what we have seen in Uvalda and other communities. Inaction is a waiver of responsibility,” he said.

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World Nation News Desk
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