House begins to move forward on gun control legislation as Judiciary Committee reviews Protecting Our Children Act

The House Judiciary Committee will consider eight gun control bills on Thursday that will be grouped together as the ‘Protecting Our Children Act’ and will go to the House for a vote next week, an aide says. of the committee. The move comes as President Biden told reporters on Tuesday he would meet with Congress on guns.

“I will meet with Congress on guns, I promise you that,” the president told reporters on Tuesday.

The committee will first debate and modify the proposed legislation in a scoping session before the votes of the Full House. But any measure passed by the Democratic-led House would also have to pass through the Senate, requiring 60 votes to advance and pass. The evenly divided Senate is highly unlikely to agree to the sweeping changes that most House Democrats want.

Legislation being considered by House Democrats would do the following

  • Increase the age of purchase of a centerfire semi-automatic rifle from 18 to 21
  • Make it illegal to import, sell, manufacture, transfer, or possess a large capacity magazine, with some exceptions
  • Establish requirements governing the storage of firearms in residential facilities
  • Rely on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms regulatory ban on bump stocks, attachments to firearms that facilitate rapid firing. Existing humpback stocks would have to be registered, and civilian sale and possession of humpback stocks would be prohibited.
  • Current federal firearms regulations would apply to so-called “ghost weapons”.

On the Senate side, Republican Senator John Cornyn, who represents Texas, and Democratic Senator from Connecticut Chris Murphy reunite on ZOOM Tuesday to see if they can find common ground on gun safety reforms. A Cornyn aide said they were meeting to “see if we can agree on a basic framework” to move any gun legislation forward. More meetings are scheduled for later this week, according to a congressional aide.

Cornyn represents the state where an 18-year-old shooter beaten down 19 children and two teachers, leaving families and the community to mourn. Mr. Biden said on Sunday that he had not yet negotiated with Republican senators on the matter.

On CBS News’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday, Murphy, whose home state suffered the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre a decade ago, said he knew Republicans would not support everything he does. But “red flag laws are on the table,” along with expanding background checks and things like safe gun storage.

“I think we can do something, but we don’t have much time,” murphy said.

During a meeting with New Zealand’s prime minister on Tuesday, the president noted that the United States is experiencing a high number of mass shootings.

“Much of it is preventable and the devastation is unbelievable,” he said.

Mr. Biden visited Uvalde, Texas and Robb Elementary School on Sunday, meeting with families who have lost loved ones. The pain there was “palpable”, he said.

The exact date when the president will meet with members of Congress remains unclear.

“When the time comes, he will get involved,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said on Tuesday.

– CBS News Congressional Correspondent Scott MacFarlane contributed to this report


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