Ten Republican and 10 Democrat senators announced Sunday they reached a deal on a narrow set of gun safety measures. The measures in the bipartisan gun control deal were crafted to maximize the likelihood of winning approval from at least 10 Republican senators.
The agreement includes enhanced background checks for prospective gun buyers under the age of 21 and a provision to bar domestic abusers from having guns if they are in a dating relationship. Currently, domestic abusers must be married to or living with or parenting a child with a victim to have their guns confiscated. The so-called “boyfriend loophole” would allow police to confiscate firearms from convicted domestic abusers who are dating.
States will get money from the deal to implement so-called “red-flag” laws that let police confiscate guns from people deemed dangerous. It also provides funding for mental health resources and boosts school safety and mental health services.
“Obviously, 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,” President Joe Biden said. “With bipartisan support, there are no excuses for delay, and no reason why it should not quickly move through the Senate and the House.”
Biden thanked four Senators for their “tireless work to produce this proposal”: John Cornyn R-Texas, Tom Tillis R-N.C., Kyrsten Sinema D-Ariz. and Chris Murphy D-Conn.
Other Senators in the bipartisan group included Richard Blumenthal D-Conn., Roy Blunt R-Mo., Cory Booker D- N.J., Richard Burr R-N.C., Bill Cassidy R-La., Susan Collins R-Maine, Chris Coons D-Del., Lindsey Graham R-S.C., Martin Heinrich D-N.M., Mark Kelly D-Ariz., Angus King I-Maine, Joe Manchin D-W.Va., Rob Portman R-Ohio, Mitt Romney R-Utah, Debbie Stabenow D-Mich. and Pat Toomey R-Pa..
None of the 10 Republicans face voters in November because four retire this year. Romney next faces voters in 2024, and the other five have four years left on their terms.
Blunt, Burr, Portman and Toomey are not seeking reelection, opting to end their careers at the end of their current term.
Secure in their seats for another four years are Cornyn, Tillis, Cassidy, Collins and Graham.
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