House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has confirmed that a ban on assault weapons will soon be considered.
Speaking on Wednesday (1 June) from her hometown of San Francisco, Pelosi reeled off a list of anti-gun violence bills that would be discussed during today’s (2 June) House Judiciary Committee, with a ban on high-capacity magazines being one of them.
If passed, the ban would mark the most aggressive response so far to last month’s Texas shooting, when 19 children and two adults were killed at an elementary school in Uvalde.
According to The Hill, Pelosi revealed Democrats are also considering introducing legislation that’s specifically designed to better warn the American public of active shooter situations.
She said: “And then, as we get through those, we will be having a hearing and marking up the assault weapon ban. So we just are trying to hit it every possible way.”
Pelosi was speaking at an anti-gun violence event when she made the remarks.
Eight additional anti-gun violence bills will be discussed today, which will include legislation that means the age for purchasing certain semi-automatic rifles is raised.
House Democratic leaders have also scheduled a vote next week on legislation that will keep weapons out of the hands of ‘potentially violent people’.
However, it’s not a given that a ban on assault weapons would get the full House’s vote, as not only do some centrist Democrats oppose such a ban, but barely any Republicans are likely to give such legislation their backing.
Speaking after Pelosi’s announcement, a senior Democratic aide said: “We are looking at many legislative options to make our country safer and assessing where we have the votes.”
The Hill also notes that the bill has ‘no chance’ of passing through the 50-50 Senate as Republicans oppose practically all new firearm limits, which means the bill is unlikely to reach President Biden’s desk.
On 24 May, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos opened fire at Robb Elementary School in the city of Uvalde using an AR-style semi-automatic rifle.
Ten days earlier, a lone gunman entered a grocery store in Buffalo with a similar weapon and killed ten people.
On Saturday (28 May), Vice President Kamala Harris called for a ban on assault weapons in the US, saying, according to The Guardian: “We are not sitting around, waiting to figure out what the solution looks like. We know what works on this. It includes – let’s have an assault weapons ban.”
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