Senate negotiators have settled on a bipartisan framework for new gun-control legislation after a spate of mass shootings heightened the sense of urgency among lawmakers.
Democrats and Republicans involved in the discussions announced Sunday they have a deal in principle that includes providing financial incentives for states that adopt “red flag” laws, more money for school security, more investments in mental health and expanding the background check system to include youth felony records.
“Today, we are announcing a commonsense, bipartisan proposal to protect America’s children, keep our schools safe, and reduce the threat of violence across our country,” the lawmakers said in a statement. “Families are scared, and it is our duty to come together and get something done that will help restore their sense of safety and security in their communities.”
“Our plan increases 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,” they said. “Most importantly, our plan saves lives while also protecting the constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans.”
Senate negotiations have been hard at work on their gun proposal following the May 24 shooting in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 children and two teachers dead, and a May 14 shooting at a Buffalo supermarket that left 10 Black people dead.
The legislative road ahead is still filled with potential pitfalls.
The lawmakers must win the support of at least 10 Republican senators to circumvent the Senate’s filibuster rule, which requires 60 votes to pass legislation.