December 12, 2023
If there’s one thing for certain about Second Amendment politics, it is that U.S. Senate Democrats would love to institute a sweeping ban on the majority of semi-auto firearms in the United States. We told you recently how a pair of senators had introduced a new ban on so-called “assault weapons” under a different name to try to fool those not well-versed in firearms. Calling it the “Gas-Operated Semi-Automatic Firearms Exclusion Act,” Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-New Mexico, and Independent Sen. Angus King of Maine introduced the measure on Nov. 30 that would ban nearly all AR-style and many other semi-auto rifles, along with firearm magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
Not to be outdone, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer recently attempted to have the Senate vote on a different sweeping “assault weapons” ban bill. Schumer brought Senate Bill 25, titled the “Assault Weapons Ban of 2023,” to the floor Dec. 6 on unanimous consent, meaning all senators present must be in favor of the measure in order to hold an official vote. The ban is basically a rehash of past such measures and would outlaw a wide variety of commonly owned firearms based on cosmetic features of those guns. In bringing the ban to the floor, Sen. Schumer attempted to shame Republicans who he thought might be in opposition to the measure.
“By passing the Assault Weapons Ban today, we can help save lives, get these weapons off our streets and prevent further tragedies,” he said on the Senate floor. “So, today Republicans face a choice as they do every day. We say to our Republican friends: stand with families fearing for their lives, or stand with the gun lobby and block this Assault Weapons Ban.”
That same day, Schumer brought two other measures—one a gun storage requirement, the other a “universal background check” measure—to the floor, also on unanimous consent. Fortunately, none of the bills had the support needed for a floor vote to be called. By bringing the measures up for unanimous consent, Sen. Schumer appears to be signaling to America that the Democrats will continue to support gun bans and expanded background checks, while at the same time protecting Senate Democrats from having to go on record in voting for those ensure. One thing’s for certain: We haven’t heard the end of this effort. No matter what they call common semi-auto firearms, they’ll be back next year, if not later this year, trying to force a ban through Congress.
About the Author
Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for nearly 25 years.
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