US Senate Republicans block Democrats bill to ban bump stocks

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The move came days after the court overturned a policy enacted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF)…reports Asian Lite News

Senate Republicans on Tuesday blocked an attempt by Democrats to pass a bill to ban bump stocks in the wake of a recent Supreme Court ruling, The Hill reported.

The move came days after the court overturned a policy enacted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in 2018 after a mass shooting in Las Vegas killed 60 people and wounded hundreds.

The shooter used guns equipped with bump stocks, which allow semiautomatic weapons to fire off hundreds of rounds per minute.

Senator Martin Heinrich, a New Mexico Democrat, requested that his bill banning bump stocks be brought up for a vote under unanimous consent, a procedure in which a measure passes so long as no lawmaker objects. Senator Pete Ricketts, a Nebraska Republican, blocked the measure by objecting.

Heinrich said Tuesday there’s “no legitimate use for a bump stock. Not for self-defence. Not for law enforcement.”

“Welcome to another day in the Democrat summer of show votes,” Ricketts said Tuesday, likening the move by Democrats to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-N.Y.) decision to hold votes on reproductive rights in recent weeks.

Ricketts also said the Supreme Court ruled correctly last week, as per The Hill.

“This bill may be called the BUMP Act, but it’s not really about bump stocks,” Ricketts said. “This bill is about banning as many firearm accessories as possible and giving ATF broad authority to ban most semiautomatic firearms.”

Heinrich, who rolled out the bill a year ago alongside Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), tore into the idea that bump stocks will once again be available.

“There is no legitimate use for a bump stock. Not for self-defence. Not for law enforcement. Not even in military applications as they are less accurate than a standard fully automatic military platform,” Heinrich said. “What they are tailor-made for is a mass shooting.”

Where the legislative effort goes from here, though, is unclear.

Schumer declined to say whether he would bring it up for a full vote on the floor, saying only that he hoped Republicans would “see the light” and not block Heinrich’s bill.

“Donald Trump is hardly a friend of gun safety, but I’m just shocked that the Supreme Court would be even to the right of him,” Schumer said in floor remarks earlier in the day. “If Republicans get in the way today, if they decide to side with the gun lobby instead of parents and teachers and law enforcement, they are asking for another tragedy to strike sooner or later.” (ANI)

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