Senate Democrats are on the move again with a renewed push for restrictions on one’s Constitutional right to keep and bear arms in the wake of the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon.
Spearheading the charge is U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Chris Murphy (D-CT), who plan on introducing a “family modest” gun control bill into the Senate next week.
In a speech on Wednesday night, Blumenthal laid out what that bill will include.
“The time for action is now on universal background checks, a ban on illegal trafficking and straw purchases, a prohibition on assault weapons and high capacity magazines, as well as a mental health initiative and school safety measures,” he said. “This kind of comprehensive package of reforms has been proposed. This body failed to adopt it. But that is no excuse for inaction now.”
While much of that sounds like the same old same old, at least one key addition was also explained. For example, in addition to universal background checks, there will be a provision that removes the 72-hour deadline for background checks. Under current law, if a background check isn’t completed within 72 hours the sale can go forward.
As many critics of the provision point out, if there’s no deadline in place, the government can dither and dither and dither on a pending transfer.
“If you give them carte blanche to take their time to complete the background check or not complete the background check, it’s going to be chaos,” Scott Wilson, president of the gun rights group Connecticut Citizens Defense League, told The West Hartford News. “I think certain bureaucrats who do not wish for law abiding citizens to possess firearms will use that to their advantage.”
Meanwhile, it appears Murphy believes he can shame his fellow lawmakers into voting for the bill.
“Congress has become an accomplice in these murders,” he said at a recent press conference. “We are quietly endorsing this mass slaughter by refusing to act … I don’t care how many members of Congress send out tweets saying they’re sorry. You aren’t sorry, you aren’t truly sympathetic if you’re not willing to act.”