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Why This Generation’s Last Gun Safety Agreement May Be This One

The bipartisan Senate bill on gun safety is being hailed by Democrats as a first step in the fight against gun violence. In actuality, the second stage won’t happen anytime soon.

The chamber is about to approve the most substantial gun safety legislation to be considered by Congress in almost 30 years.

Democrats have praised the accomplishment while describing the package as a compromise that moves them closer to more general aims in terms of gun control, such as increasing background checks and outlawing assault weapons.

However, it took the Senate almost ten years to pass a significant piece of legislation that could overcome a filibuster in response to the elementary school shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, and Uvalde, Texas.

Given this, senators accept that further gun control measures might not happen for several years.

It “accurately reflects people’s true hopes, and often success builds on success,” said Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), who called the gun bill the first step.

However, he issued a warning, saying, “My read of the room here is that if we do this, we’ve got a lot of other issues that are on the table right now. And it’ll probably be some time before we revisit anything related to firearm safety.

Two months ago, it would have been laughable to think that the Senate could move a bill on one of the most divisive issues in American politics.

The final product still also emphasised the significant barriers impeding support for more comprehensive ideas, such as raising the purchase age for assault weapons to 21.

And writing gun legislation in a Congress where most legislation requires some GOP votes won’t become any simpler.

This autumn, the House is most likely to go Republican. Democrats lack the necessary numbers to weaken the filibuster.

Furthermore, fewer than one-third of Senate Republicans are supporting a gun compromise that many Democrats see as a modest concession to the GOP.

Some Democrats are fed up with the party line that they will return for more in the future.

“Three times during the weekend, this was almost destroyed. We are hardly making any progress. This continual “it’s not enough!” and “we’ll get more later” is just plain crap, said one Democratic senator who wished to remain anonymous to talk frankly. “I think this will be the high-water mark for the foreseeable future.”

The upcoming gun safety package, according to Republicans, is about as far as their party will go, especially because four of the 15 Republicans who are expected to support the plan will leave the office after this Congress.

Finally, there are the political repercussions of defying their own party’s staunchly conservative wing as well as gun rights organisations like the National Rifle Association.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), a supporter of the measure, recalls recommending to chief negotiators that they raise the minimum age for purchasing assault weapons in their proposal. It wouldn’t receive 60 votes, they informed him.


The Utah Republican predicted that Democrats would be unable to accomplish more because they would “barely be able to get by with the Republicans they need to get this done.” Therefore, “they’re not going to get 10 Republicans if they want to do something more than this.”

Members on both sides of the aisle agree that the end of May shooting in Uvalde that left 19 children and two teachers dead changed the dynamics around the previously elusive gun deal.

On several policy issues, including background checks, Republicans believed that Democrats were more inclined to compromise. Democrats, on the other hand, noticed a change in some GOP senators’ receptivity to gun safety measures.

The bipartisan agreement, according to chief Democratic negotiator Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), suggests that additional gun safety measures may soon be feasible.

Murphy said: “I’ve always thought that if Republicans voted for gun safety measures, they’d realise that the sky doesn’t fall. “It will be interesting to see how the Republicans fare in this.

Republicans who support this will likely find a lot of fresh domestic support they had not previously anticipated, and I believe those opposition groups won’t be able to do much harm.

Furthermore, the possibility of further legislation could be significantly impacted by the success of the bipartisan gun safety package.

The bill eliminates the “boyfriend loophole” by extending firearms prohibitions to domestic abusers, and it offers money to states to help them implement “red flag laws” or other crisis intervention programmes. Additionally, the law includes additional funding for school safety and mental health.

Republicans who support the bill rejected Democratic claims that it is the first in a long series of gun proposals. This argument tends to increase concerns among GOP base voters who think that any limitations on gun ownership will lead to a slippery slope.

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), who supported the bill’s advancement, stated, “They shouldn’t say that.” “Because this effort will lead to success at the finish line. All of these activities are positive steps. Let’s put that in place, then. now let’s check the outcome.

Following several unsuccessful attempts to reduce gun violence, the bipartisan gun safety measure is anticipated to pass the Senate. Following the Sandy Hook school shooting, the majority of Republicans obstructed a bill in 2013 to increase background checks.

2019’s negotiations following the massacres in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, which occurred back-to-back, failed because former President Donald Trump lost interest during the House’s impeachment investigation.

To enhance the National Instant Criminal Background Check System’s reporting from federal agencies and states, the Senate did enact limited legislation in 2018.

Lead negotiators on this year’s gun safety package, Murphy and Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), drafted that legislation.

This time around, Cornyn stated, “We’ve attempted to incorporate in this everything that we could think of that would possibly have bipartisan support.”

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Cornyn did not exclude the prospect of reexamining the matter if necessary. Additionally, senators from all parties said that further legislative action will probably rely on the circumstances surrounding future catastrophes.

That would entail once more bucking the political odds. So, when will Congress once more take action on guns?

Dick Durbin, the Democratic majority whip in the Senate from Illinois, stated, “After waiting 30 years, I’m not ready to say.”

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