Senate overcomes filibuster, votes to open debate on gun bill
April 11th, 2013
11:40 AM ET
5 years ago

Senate overcomes filibuster, votes to open debate on gun bill

Washington (CNN) - The U.S. Senate voted Thursday to overcome a Republican-led filibuster against tougher gun laws, clearing the way for a major congressional debate on a package of proposals sought by President Barack Obama in the aftermath of the Connecticut school massacre.

The procedural vote followed a breakthrough by Sens. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, and Pat Toomey, R-Pennsylvania, on broadening background checks to include private purchases at gun shows and on the Internet.


Filed under: Gun control • Gun rights • Senate
soundoff (188 Responses)
  1. Bill

    @ Guest

    You obviously skipped your government classes. No congressional legislation can impact the Constitution and your creepy obsession with owning guns. Your second amendment rights will not be impacted. Only an amendment to the Consitution can change it. And by the way 90% of Americans (including gun owners) want to see some changes in the gun control laws. I suppose you are one of the ones that hunts deer with an AR-15.

    April 11, 2013 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  2. Guest2013

    Automatic death penalty ? Right .... so if Mr. Criminal shoots one, he might as well take as many as he can ... duh!

    April 11, 2013 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  3. josh

    even our own justice department says these proposed gun laws won't help so what exactly is there to debate? come up with something that actually punishes criminals and not law abiding citizens and then lets debate about what to do.

    April 11, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  4. mike0404

    Please explain to me how doing a background check on the purchaser of a gun is in fringing on anyone's right. Where I live, if you want to coach a little league team you must be finger printed and have a background check to protect children from pedophiles. NO ONE objects to this.

    April 11, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  5. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I would like more check; that would go for every transfer of a weapon. There is no excuse for that. There also needs to be check that everyone who has a weapon has some secure place to put it. We don't need to hear stories like the one in Toms River NJ where a 4 year old accidently shoots a 6 year old playment with a rifle from his house. Having the weapons secured would have prevented the Sandy Hook shooting because the shooter wouldn't have been able to get his hands on the weapons.

    As for those that see this list as a way for the government to grab the weapons, I say that they have too much paranoia. I see it as a list of those that can be quickly conscripted to the military in case of the need for armed forces.

    April 11, 2013 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  6. txfa

    The only reason anyone would vote against opening the subject for debate (as the U.S. Senate used to do on a regular basis when I was growing up) is because they know that their position is insupportable when spoken publicly. If only one child could be saved in the future by background checks becoming universal, then the effort is worth it. And, if it prevents you from the instant gratification of having a gun today you have no business possessing anyway–such as machine guns, rapid-fire automatics, etc–and you have to wait a few days, too bad. Grow up! Oh, and when you get that high-powered gun I want you to adhere to the Second Amendment of the Constitution and sign up for your local militia. All of you gun nuts always seem to forget that in English, the WHOLE sentence must be considered, not just the phrase you like. "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right to bear arms shall not be abridged." Funny how you all seem to think that the sentence starts at "the right to bear arms..."

    Now, since we no longer have local militias (they went out with the muskets being referred to in the 2nd Amendment), I expect you to sign up for the National Guard. And, to be well-ordered, yes, you have to go to the drills on the weekends instead of sitting at home drinking beer out of the can, watching sports on TV and complaining about those "libburls" that are stealing your rights.

    April 11, 2013 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  7. bryce

    Anybody else find it disturbing the NRA uses a grade rating system in regards to politicians that can help them further their lack of humanity. Absolutely pathetic!

    April 11, 2013 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  8. Don

    For those of you interested in such things, here is the "turncoat list" for the vote to end the filibuster:

    16 Republicans voted in favor:
    Alexander (TN)
    Ayotte (NH)
    Burr (NC)
    Chambliss (GA)
    Coburn (OK)
    Collins (ME)
    Corker (TN)
    Flake (AZ)
    Graham (SC)
    Heller (NV)
    Hoeven (ND)
    Isakson (GA)
    Kirk (IL)
    McCain (AZ)
    Toomey (PA)
    Wicker (MS)

    Two Democrats voted against:
    Begich (AK)
    Pryor (AR)

    [sarcasm]The two Republican Arizona Senators voted for it – gee, there's a surprise...[/sarcasm]

    April 11, 2013 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  9. Ted van Tol

    Just last days, a child of four killed his frend of six and a child killed his grandma.
    Ban the guns out of the street and secure the one that are in the house.

    April 11, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  10. Hamlet

    @Bill, You can hunt a deer with an AR-15, I would prefer a 7mm Mag for that. But I own both.

    One is a .22 caliber and the other is much larger at 7mm. Both are excellent tools. Why are you afraid of one and not the other? Because one looks scary?

    April 11, 2013 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  11. William House

    Just keep wasting our time on specious gun registration schemes as the middle class economy is flatline and the violence of the drug war goes unabated

    April 11, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  12. Guest

    Gotta love the left constant reference to anyone who owns a gun being lackeys to the NRA....once again, check your facts dems, about 5 million NRA members – about 100 million gun owners. Since the comments here suggest accoutnability, responsibility, oversight, et al should I assume that the dem party is now FOR voter ID, enforcing our nations immigration laws, requiring convicted criminals to serve their full term, requiring drug testing for those dependent on govt welfare / resources.....or is it all the standard hypocrisy?

    April 11, 2013 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  13. William House

    If only ONE LIFE could be saved by locking us all in RUBBER ROOMS....

    April 11, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  14. terryrayc

    I'm lost regarding needing background checks on internet purchases? You cannot have firearms delivered to your home. They have to be delivered to a Licensed Dealer and you pick them up. Federal Law requires that Form 4473 be filled out in person.

    April 11, 2013 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  15. Rebe

    Has anyone looked at the amendments attached to this Bill? I think thats the problem that most have along with the fact that we already have background checks required when you purchase a firearms. This includes guns shows.

    April 11, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  16. reasonablebe

    finally. enough decided the antics were juvenile and there was some cooperation. have the discussion, then vote. at least let the discussion go forward.

    April 11, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  17. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    Conservatives like to claim that we don't need new gun laws because in their words, the current gun laws are not being enforced. Gee, I hate to break this to you but the current gun laws are being enforced. A matter of fact, the current gun lasw are being forced so extensively that under the current gun laws the mentally ill, domestic violence offenders, would-be terrorists and convicted felons can easily and freely purchase guns at one of hundreds of gun shows that take place every day across the country. Or they can go on the internet and have a gun shipped directly to their house. This is because in those venues, which represent an estimated 40% of gun sales, no background check is required.

    Furthermore, as a result of the current gun laws, the Virginia Tech shooter was able to purchase his weapons simply because his mental health record was not in the federal data base system, which would have prohibited the sale of those weapons. Likewise, the Aurora shooter James Holmes would have been prevented from purchasing his deadly weapons and his 6,000 rounds of ammo on the internet and the same ican be said for the Tucson shooter Jarred Loughner because they all had a long history of mental health issues. That is why it is so important for us to have mandatory background checks filtered into a federal data base system as they would save many many lives.

    April 11, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  18. txfa

    One other point...the pro-gun folk say that there guns are needed to defend their homes. I heard Wayne LaPierre say that what the country needs is more guns not fewer. Ok. Then explain this to me.

    There are more guns in private possession in the United States than in the next 10 civilized countries in the world COMBINED! If the number of guns equated with safety, we should already be the safest nation on earth. Yet, we have more murders per year than the next (I believe it is) 20 countries combined.

    Oh, and you guys who own guns, I wouldn't argue with the wifey if I were you. The great majority of gun killings in the United States involve two people who know each other who are having a domestic dispute. Just a word to the wise. (Which probably means it is wasted effort on my part.)

    April 11, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  19. sonny chapman

    No law, even one that carries the Death penalty, can prevent bad acts from happening. But look how LITTLE is being asked of Gun owners ! Can't the Gun Owners sacrifice a little inconvenience to acknowledge to the Non-Gun Owners of this ONE Nation that they respect their position on this Gun Thing ? How do the Gun Owners hollering about THEIR 2nd Amendment Rights compare to The Greatest Generation who sacrificed & beat Germany & Japan at the same time ?

    April 11, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  20. hvfpaints

    The issue is that these congressional morons are not adressing the real issue in these mass shootings. Nothing in this bill would have prevented those tragedies. The criminals don't abide by any law anyway, so it will not prevent them from getting guns either! It is BS pure and simple, like trying to solve drunk driving by making it harder for sober drivers to buy a car.

    April 11, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  21. JimPa

    No one is taking my guns away! No government, no new laws, i don't give a hoot what any of them say. If they don't like it, i got a 12 gauge that i can gladly introduce them to!

    April 11, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  22. OldSchool

    Lets get it out in the open, why are these politicians so afraid of debating things on the floor? The majority of Americans want stronger firearms regulations.

    April 11, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  23. mitchgam

    No, toughing gun laws and requiring background checks will not stop anyone determined from owing a gun, that shouldn't from getting one, nothing will

    BUT, it will stop or at least slow down their access to them.
    Like putting a lock on your door stops potential burglars does.

    As long as anyone wanting to own a guy, that is allowed to purchase one, under our current laws, can get one, what is the harm in it?
    If it saves even one life, the small hassle is worth it.

    April 11, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  24. Grinning Libber

    The NRA is melting melting

    April 11, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  25. Cody

    This is just asinine, if you buy a gun online it is already required to ship to an FFL dealer to do a proper background check, what legislation can they propose that could make it any stricter. In all honesty we can't afford to enforce the laws we already have so if laws are broken in regards to purchasing online then they get away with it, so why not pass more legislation to spread the already tight budget even further? That way we can make more criminals and enforce less laws! Just an observation from a Political Science and Accounting Major

    April 11, 2013 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
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