Democratic House Passes Second Gun Control Bill In Two Days

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

A day after Democrats in the House of Representatives passed a new background check bill, another gun control bill is moving out of the chamber and on to the Senate.

On Thursday, Democrats passed H.R. 1112, the Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2019, on a vote of 228-198.

The bill extends the length of time the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has to conduct a background check before an individual can take possession of their purchased firearm.

According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, if the licensed dealer selling the firearm does not receive a final “proceed” or “denied” response from the National Instant Criminal Background Check (NICS) system, they must wait three business days before transferring the firearm to the purchaser. However, this new bill would give the FBI more time to conduct a background check, increasing the potential wait time from three days to ten.

After ten days, the purchaser can file a petition to proceed with the transfer, but the dealer must then wait another ten days after the petition’s filing.

Gun rights supporters opposed to the legislation argue that it puts law-abiding citizens at risk, as they won’t be able to exercise their Second Amendment right to protect themselves.

To protect victims of domestic violence, Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.), a victim of domestic violence herself, proposed an amendment that would “allow victims of domestic violence to protect themselves according to the current background requirements and their Second Amendment rights,” the official House Judiciary GOP Twitter account tweeted.

Though, Rep. Lesko told her Democratic colleagues that the motion to recommit would not “kill the bill or send it back to committee,” Democrats voted down the amendment.

Furthermore, the legislation would have a “significant impact” on the Second Amendment rights of veterans.

As Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-Tenn.), a Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs explained on the House floor, “a little known and poorly understood provision of H.R. 1112 would amend the law to make it unlawful for an individual that has been ‘adjudicated with mental illness, severe developmental disability, or severe emotional instability,’ to purchase, possess a firearm.”

“Although there may not have ever been a finding by a judicial authority that the veteran poses a danger to themselves or society,” he continued, “these veterans would be told that they were good enough to use a firearm to fight for our freedoms, but are not good enough to have the freedom to bear arms as a civilian.”

View Rep. Roe’s full speech below.

While the Democrat-led House passed this legislation, it is now headed to the Republican-controlled Senate where it is expected to fail.

This article has been updated with additional information regarding the process of purchasing a firearm, as the original article did not state that a purchaser must wait an additional ten days after filing a petition to continue a transfer after the initial ten day wait period.