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Warner, Kaine to introduce bill to ban bump stocks in wake of Las Vegas shooting

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) have joined Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.) to introduce a bill to close a loophole that allows semi-automatic weapons to be easily modified to fire at the rate of automatic weapons.

“Fully automatic machine guns have been strictly regulated since 1986 under President Reagan. This bill will fix an egregious loophole that was exploited by the Las Vegas shooter to cause unspeakable mayhem, killing dozens and injuring hundreds of innocent civilians,” said Sen. Warner in a prepared statement.

The Democratic lawmakers say the measure is designed to send a message that the Second Amendment can be honored and respected while preventing people from skirting the law to turn legally obtained firearms into weapons of war.

The bill, called the Automatic Gun Fire Prevention Act, would ban the sale, transfer, importation, manufacture or possession of bump stocks, trigger cranks and similar accessories that accelerate a semi-automatic rifle’s rate of fire.

“We continue to suffer horrific mass shootings like the one we saw in Las Vegas this week -- in Virginia we know the unbearable pain they cause -- but Congress has remained unwilling to do anything to help stop them from happening again and again,” Kaine said in a prepared statement. “ … We need to take long overdue action on gun safety and quickly pass this bill that can save lives.”

Under the National Firearms Act, the sale, manufacture, and transfer of automatic weapons are illegal. However, bump stocks, slide fire devices and other similar accessories can be attached to semi-automatic weapons. These devices increases the semi-automatic rifle's rate of fire between 400 and 800 rounds per minute.

Legitimate accessories used by hunters would be exempt. The bill also contains exceptions for lawful possession of these devices by law enforcement and the government. Lawmakers said their proposal makes clear its intent is to target only accessories that increases a semi-automatic rifle's rate of fire.

Kaine was governor of Virginia during the Virginia Tech mass shooting. Both he and Warner have long supported improving mental health policy and passing measures to curb gun violence.

Meanwhile, Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (R) joined other members of Congress in penning a letter to the acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) asking to re-evaluate bump stocks.

On Thursday the National Rifle Association also came out calling for “additional regulations” on bump stocks.

"The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulation," the organization said in a statement.

Comments


Logic of the gun crowd suggests we should also do away with all traffic regulations since we have so many traffic laws and yet still people get killed in auto accidents.


You can’t regulate evil Mark and Tim. Stay out our our lives.


Gunnecks in Virginia won’t be happy with that. They need their toys.

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