Joe Biden has urged US lawmakers to get a deal on gun reforms to his desk quickly as a group of senators announced a limited bipartisan framework Sunday responding to last month’s mass shootings.
The proposed deal is a modest breakthrough offering measured gun curbs while bolstering efforts to improve school safety and mental health programs.
It falls far short of tougher steps long sought by Biden, many Democrats, gun reform advocates and America citizens. Byvoorbeeld, there is no proposal to ban assault weapons, as activists had wanted, or to increase from 18 aan 21 the age required to buy them.
Selfs so, if the accord leads to the enactment of legislation, it would signal a turn from years of gun massacres that have yielded little but stalemate in Congress.
In 'n verklaring, Biden acknowledged the deal’s weaknesses but welcomed and urged quick action.
“It does not do everything that I think is needed, but it reflects important steps in the right direction, and would be the most significant gun safety legislation to pass Congress in decades," hy het gesê.
The president added: “There are no excuses for delay, and no reason why it should not quickly move through the Senate and the House. Each day that passes, more children are killed in this country: the sooner it comes to my desk, the sooner I can sign it, and the sooner we can use these measures to save lives.”
Leaders hope to push any agreement into law quickly – they hope this month – before the political momentum fades that has been stirred by the recent mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas.
Significantly, the “agreement in principle” appears to have the backing of at least 10 Republican senators, enough to reach a 60-vote threshold in the chamber and overcome the filibuster.
The deal aims to make the juvenile records of gun buyers under age 21 available when they undergo background checks. The suspects who killed 10 people at a grocery store in Buffalo and 19 students and two teachers at an elementary school in Uvalde were both 18, and many of the attackers who have committed mass shootings in recent years have been young.
The agreement would offer money to states to implement “red flag” laws that make it easier to temporarily take guns from people considered potentially violent, and to bolster school safety and mental health programs.
And it would take other steps, including requiring more people who sell guns obtain federal dealers’ licenses, which means they would have to conduct background checks of purchasers.
The agreement follows weeks of intense negotiations between the divided groups of senators, led by Chris Murphy of Connecticut on the Democratic side, and for the Republicans by John Cornyn of Texas.
In 'n verklaring, the bipartisan group of lawmakers said the measures provide “needed mental health resources, improves school safety and support for students, and helps ensure dangerous criminals and those who are adjudicated as mentally ill can’t purchase weapons”.
Senate majority whip Dick Durbin expressed his blessing on social media.
“Each of the elements in this bipartisan gun safety package has the potential to save lives,” hy het geskryf in a series of tweets.
“I continue to believe military-style assault weapons that can shred the bodies of their victims have no place in civilian use – but we cannot let the perfect Congressional response be the enemy of the good.
“Though this agreement falls short in this and other respects, it can and will make our nation safer.”
Gun reform advocacy groups also welcomed the development. John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, in 'n verklaring gesê: “If the framework announced today gets enacted into law, it will be the most significant piece of gun safety legislation to make it through Congress in 26 long and deadly years.
“We applaud this bipartisan coalition, led by senators Murphy and Cornyn, for leading this push to address our nation’s raging gun violence crisis, and we call on their colleagues to answer the call of history, and honor the victims and survivors of gun violence with long overdue action.”
Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, gesê: “We’re breaking the logjam in Congress and proving that gun safety isn’t just good policy – it’s good politics.
“Our grassroots army has been demanding action from the Senate for nearly a decade and now we’ll fight like hell to get this historic deal over the finish line.”
The announcement came one day after thousands of people protested in numerous March for Our Lives events around the country on Saturday, calling for stronger gun laws.
David Hogg, a survivor of the 2018 deadly mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida, and co-founder of the movement, tweeted a photograph of himself celebrating with a giant milkshake.
“When senators reach a bipartisan deal on guns for the first time in 30 years – time to celebrate with the breakfast of champions,” he wrote.