Several members of the United States Senate put their political differences aside on June 12 to announce an agreement on gun safety legislation. According to CNN, the agreement includes “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.”
Further reports reveal this bipartisan agreement holds the support of at least 10 Republican senators, enough to beat the Senate filibuster. However, while this agreement is a surprising turn of events given the extreme divide the idea of gun control can cause, “actual legislative text” has not been written yet, CNN reports.
So what should you know about this bipartisan gun safety proposal? Here are some of the most important highlights:
This proposal establishes more funding for school safety resources. What that exactly entails exactly is not yet clear.
It further reviews the gun-buying process for people who are under the age of 21. This means that those between the ages of 18 and 21 looking to purchase a firearm will have to go through a more extensive process before being approved.
Additional penalties for foe straw purchasing. Foe straw purchasing is when a firearm is purchased for someone who doesn’t want his or her name associated with the firearm. According to The Firearm Industry Trade Association, straw purchasing is already a federal crime that carries a sentence of 10 years in jail and up to $250,000 in fines.
What the additional penalties will be is currently unclear.
The proposal also asks for state crisis intervention orders. These orders would provide trained professionals to help with mental health and more. It’s unclear if these orders would provide funding to states who don’t already have these crisis hotlines in place.
In response to the proposal, President Joe Biden calls it a step in the right direction. The agreement “does not do everything that I think is needed, but it reflects important steps in the right direction,” Biden revealed.
Nonetheless, as Biden continued, this framework will be “the most significant gun safety legislation to pass Congress in decades. With bipartisan support, there are no excuses for delay, and no reason why it should not quickly move through the Senate and the House.”
He continued, adding, “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.”
As CNN reports, the Republican senators on board with this proposal include John Cornyn of Texas, Thom Tillis and Richard Burr of North Carolina, Roy Blunt of Missouri, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Rob Portman of Ohio, Mitt Romney of Utah and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
The Democratic Senators who signed the release announcing the proposal include, Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly of Arizona, Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Chris Coons of Delaware, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, and Independent Senator Angus King of Maine.
This proposal comes after months of an alarming uptick in gun violence in America.
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