Senate to start votes on gun bill on Wednesday
April 16th, 2013
08:59 PM ET
1 year ago

Senate to start votes on gun bill on Wednesday

Washington (CNN) - The U.S. Senate will begin voting on amendments to gun legislation on Wednesday, including the leading proposals for tighter restrictions spurred by the Connecticut school massacre in December.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the list of first votes would include the bipartisan yet controversial agreement on expanding background checks proposed by Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, and Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pennsylvania.

Also up in the first round will be Sen. Dianne Feinstein's proposed to ban the sale of semiautomatic firearms modeled after military style assault weapons.

President Barack Obama and many Democrats support a renewed assault weapons ban and an expansion of background checks as well as other measures before the Democratic-led Senate.

A proposal by Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas on a proposal to make
state concealed weapons permits acceptable throughout the country will also be considered.
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Other votes include a bipartisan amendment dealing with mental health and five other measures.

Each amendment needs 60 votes to pass and the first votes will start in the late afternoon.

Debate on the Senate gun bill is expected to last at least two weeks.

The drive for tougher gun control was spurred by the massacre of school children and educators by a lone gunman in the quiet community of Newtown, Connecticut, just before Christmas.

Polls since show a preference among Americans for some type of initiative to stem gun violence.

Obama and others also have been highlighting daily gun violence in America in their appeal to lawmakers for stricter limits.

Many in Washington have coalesced around expanding background checks conducted on gun sales by the FBI. But settling on the exact wording of such a step has been difficult in a sharply divided political climate.

While Democratic leaders are expressing optimism they'll get enough votes to pass the Manchin-Toomey amendment, a CNN tally of senators indicates the measure is probably in trouble unless several undecided Democrats and Republicans – mostly from conservative states – throw their support behind it.

The proposal would extend background checks to include gun shows and Internet sales.

Reid said last month that Feinstein's proposal, which was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on a Democratic party-line vote, has no chance of passage. Yet, he wanted to ensure it received a vote as an amendment rather than join it to a package of measures approved by the panel that would toughen laws on gun trafficking and straw purchases.

The powerful National Rifle Association, the leading advocate on gun rights, fiercely opposes the Feinstein proposal as well as the Manchin-Toomey compromise. It supports the measure on concealed permits.

Speaker John Boehner has said the House would look at anything passed by the Senate, but is not committing to any plan or votes.


Filed under: Gun control • Gun rights • Harry Reid • Senate
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    This nation needs GUN-BAN LAWS. Period.

    April 16, 2013 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  2. mikemikemike3

    We need to CONTROL the mentally ill and the criminals.... NOT the Law abiding gun owners of our country. Why do the gun grabbers insist on harassing law abiding citizens and refuse to go after the law breakers? 310,000,000 firearms owned by 87,000,000 Americans with an estimated 300,000,000 high capacity magazines (add 50,000,000 to that magazine number as soon as the factories can catch up with DEMAND)..... and these gun grabbers think they are going to REGISTER and CONFISCATE all these 'gunz' ???

    April 16, 2013 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  3. Ed

    Remember those who do not support the Second Amendment that they will be remembered in the next election.

    April 16, 2013 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  4. MikeinNM

    Over 100,000 Americans will have taken a bullet this year (75,000 injuries, 31,000 deaths, a third by suicide), one every 5 minutes. How can we reduce this figure? More thorough background checks and greater restrictions on high-capacity magazines may be a start. I’m open to hearing other constructive ideas.

    April 16, 2013 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  5. Woody

    All this has done is caused a boom in gun sales . There are now millions of more guns out there then there was to begin with . So what does this accomplish ? Does it stop crime ?

    April 16, 2013 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  6. S.B. Stein

    It is a move forward. It would be nice to do more, but there is the realization that this is the best that is going to be done right now if the House doesn't screw it up.

    April 16, 2013 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  7. Jesse

    No matter what restrictions you place on guns, people will find a way to cause harm to others. JUST yesterday bombs were used in Boston, no guns were used in the marathon to hurt people.

    April 16, 2013 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  8. John Illinois

    Tell Obama and his liberals to pound sand. No 2nd Amendment rights infringement!!!!

    April 16, 2013 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  9. jon

    Yes.....the constitution doesn't count if government passes something against it. Well and then has their croonies in the supreme court to rubber stamp it.

    April 16, 2013 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  10. IcemanN4

    Do the right thing senators.....OBEY the second amendment!

    April 16, 2013 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  11. IcemanN4

    America forever! Freedom forever! Right to bear arms FOREVER! Hug an NRA member today! Thanks guys....keep up the fight against gun grabby liberal SOCIALISTS!

    April 16, 2013 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  12. Denise

    "Expanding" background checks just isn't good enough. Unless they're UNIVERSAL with NO exeptions, they don't work. Exempting "private sales" between individuals makes this bill toothless. What part of UNIVERSAL does Congress not understand?

    April 16, 2013 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  13. amarjeet

    It is good that gun control regulations are passed. There should be one more that possession of materials for bomb making must also be stopped and also keeping in residences. Only licensed lab should be allowed to possess & process with license.

    April 16, 2013 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  14. vance

    if i buy a gun online it goes to a dealer who must do a background check on me before the transaction is complete. what they are trying to do is to ban the sale of guns of private citizen to private citizen and there they have no business in that business. same as if i give my first rifle to my son, they want me to then do a background check on my child and that should be a huge and resounding NO. lets enforce the already 20,000+ gun laws on the books already. and no matter how many laws you pass making things illegal, i can still go buy from the blackmarket to include grenades, fully automatic machine guns, missile launchers and the like.

    April 16, 2013 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  15. Ryan

    This bombing that happened is the reason why we need to keep our arms. Our second amendment was put in place so we can defend our country from all enemies foreign and domestic.

    April 16, 2013 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  16. adl

    a couple of lunatics commit acts of terror and we the people get to lose our rights supported by the second amendment

    April 16, 2013 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  17. proskater

    of course, the NRA supports the one amendment that INCREASES gun rights. not the almost bipartisan idea of universal background checks or any ban of any gun, but the right for Texans and Floridians to secretly bring weapons into my state, into my hometown to intimidate others. Big men, Big guns. Ridiculous. The NRA really has no idea how to come up with solutions, they will simply continue to poison society and our national welfare in the name of the all mighty $DOLLAR$.

    April 16, 2013 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  18. Ed

    I stumbled on my previous post. It should read: Remember those who do not support the Second Amendment. Remind them that they will be remembered in the next election.

    April 16, 2013 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  19. Jon Samuel

    Just ask one question. would any of these gun registration inspired bills have prevented the Newtown attacks? Of course not. Just more politics.

    April 16, 2013 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  20. jamon harris

    To be honest with all of the things that are happening I believe that the government should encourage people to get firearms and have permits for them. Such as the handguns because the world is evolving into more evil and people should be able to potect themselves at all times. Putting these new gun laws are ridiculous. Crim is rising and its not gonna stop. I don't think the semi automatic assualt weapons should not be banned at all. Just put restrictions on the clip size. Make the clips extend to a handgun clip. I pesonally don't feel that its fair to the public that we have to abide by these rules. Basically tellinmg us as hard worling citizens who gave the government the power should be able to tell us what we can and cannot purchase. Just feel like a lot of problems are about to occur in the future.

    April 16, 2013 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  21. tarura

    A ban the sale of semiautomatic firearms modeled after military style assault weapons why? Because how they look?

    And how does a pressure-cooker look? Friendly? But they can explode, one did in Boston.

    April 16, 2013 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  22. Johnson

    I hear politicians making comments about Americans coming together after the Boston drama. You have over 500 hundred people being killed every month by guns violence and there is nothing done. The constitution, my rights, no gun laws, no need to register all guns. Are Americans and the politician’s terriost that refuse passing a gun registration bill to track all guns? Terrorism the act of terrorizing occurs; occurs everyday in the urban city areas.

    April 16, 2013 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  23. ThinkAgain: Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited. - SCOTUS Justice Antonin Scalia, District of Columbia v. Heller

    A recent poll by Fox so-called News (not exactly a "lame-stream" media outlet) showed a large 85% majority of voters favors requiring checks on all gun buyers, including at gun shows and private sales. That includes most Democrats (90%), Republicans (83%) and independents (82%), as well as most of those living in a gun-owner household (81%).

    Time for the GOP to stop listening to the NRA and start listening to the American People.

    April 16, 2013 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  24. Rex Crouch

    I don't know where CNN is buying their poll data but... I'm running a poll right now which indicates that democrats who own guns are going to vote republican in 2014 and 2016 because of the oppressive Anti-American Bill of Right mentality presented by the Liberals in the Democrat Party.

    April 16, 2013 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  25. Fubarack

    We have to vote these down, so we don't have to find out what is in it. Smack down day is finally here.

    April 16, 2013 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
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