Democrats will act “boldly” to bring “commonsense” gun control reforms to the table, Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said in a statement.
“The new Democratic majority will act boldly and decisively to pass commonsense, life-saving background checks that are overwhelmingly supported by the American people,” Pelosi said, Politico reported Monday.
With Pelosi’s support, Democrats coalesced to create a gun reform proposal that would require federal background checks on all gun sales, including private sales, Politico reported.
Democratic California Rep. Mike Thompson, a Pelosi ally who says a bill for universal background checks will be introduced to Congress in early 2019, is spearheading the measure, according to Politico.
“The American people want this. They’re way ahead of the Congress, they’re way ahead of the White House,” Thompson said, according to Politico. “I think you will see it happen in the first 100 days [of 2019].”
Democratic New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler, the incoming chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, also promised to act “very quickly” to push the measure onto the House floor.
“We told the American voters that we do mean to do this, and we do mean to do it,” he told Politico.
The bill will have bipartisan support, according to Thompson, who refused to name GOP members who are set to sign on, but New York Republican Rep. Peter King indicated he will support it, Politico reported.
Roughly 60 percent of Americans want stricter gun laws, according to an October Gallup poll.
The U.S. saw a number of mass shootings in 2018. Mass shootings killed scores of people at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California; Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida; Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh; and Santa Fe High School in Texas.
GOP North Carolina Rep. Richard Hudson calls universal background checks “a red herring,” noting, “there’s not a single commercial gun transaction in America that doesn’t have a background check.”
The National Rifle Association opposes “expanding firearm background check systems, because background checks don’t stop criminals from getting firearms,” according to its website.
Gun control groups largely support the proposal.
“The public has been demanding commonsense gun laws for years,” Everytown for Gun Safety President John Feinblatt said, Politico reported. “The public is ready for the Congress to act.”
Everytown “is a movement of Americans working together to end gun violence and build safer communities,” according to its Twitter handle.
Democratic Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy maintains Republicans will be forced to accept gun control if they want to make up the losses they suffered at the midterms.
“Republicans can’t win the House back if their position on guns doesn’t change,” Murphy said, Politico reported.
The measure is unlikely to pass in a Republican-controlled Senate.
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