September 11, 2019

House Judiciary Committee Passes Three Key Gun Reform Bills

Includes House version of Feinstein bill to expand extreme risk protection order law

Washington—The House Judiciary Committee last night passed three gun reform bills that would ban high-capacity magazines, expand the use of extreme risk protection orders and add misdemeanor hate crimes to the list of actions that prohibit someone from buying a gun.

            Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) released the following statement:

            “I am glad to see the House Judiciary Committee taking meaningful action to address the plague of gun violence devastating our nation.

            “Last night the House passed three important bills, including its version of the Extreme Risk Protection Order Act. Congressman Carbajal and I introduced that bill earlier this year to expand the use of extreme risk protection orders that allow law enforcement to lawfully and temporarily remove guns from individuals a judge has determined is dangerous. Getting more states to use these order is a key step in reducing shootings.

            “The House also passed two other bills, one to ban high-capacity magazines and another to prevent individuals convicted of hate crimes from purchasing firearms.

            “High-capacity magazines have proven particularly dangerous and are frequently used in mass shootings. There’s no reason a shooter needs to fire 30 or 50 or even 100 rounds before reloading. The Dayton shooter was able to kill nine people in 30 seconds in part because he used a 100-round magazine.

            “I’m hopeful the House will now take up these three bills and send them to the Senate. I also encourage Leader McConnell to finally end his practice of blocking these commonsense, lifesaving bills. It’s long past time for Senate Republicans to take action. The longer we delay, the more lives will be lost.”

Background on extreme risk protection orders

            The Extreme Risk Protection Order Act, introduced by Senator Feinstein in February, would allow states to use Justice Department funds to develop a court process that would allow family members to petition a court for a gun violence protection order that would temporarily block dangerous individuals from purchasing weapons from federally-licensed dealers. If a protection order were granted, the individual would be designated a prohibited purchaser in the NICS background check system. 

            States could also develop a court process that would allow family members to petition a court for an extreme risk protection order that would grant law enforcement the authority to temporary take weapons from dangerous individuals who present a threat to themselves or others. The bill contains significant due process protections by ensuring confidentially and the opportunity to be heard in court.

            In addition to Senator Feinstein, the Senate bill is cosponsored by Senators Blumenthal, Murphy, Markey, Shaheen, Gillibrand, Sanders, Harris, Durbin, Baldwin, King, Casey, Menendez, Schatz, Warren, Booker, Van Hollen, Hassan, Cardin, Cantwell, Coons, Klobuchar, Whitehouse, Leahy, Hirono, Duckworth, Cortez Masto and Kaine.

            The bill is supported by Representative Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, Everytown for Gun Safety, March for Our Lives, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Sandy Hook Promise and the Coalition Against Gun Violence.

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