In the News
Lori Trahan Votes in Favor of Gun Control Bill
Washington, June 13, 2022
The package, titled the Protecting Our Kids Act, passed by a mostly party-line vote of 223-204 on Wednesday.
During a speech on Capitol Hill, Trahan referenced the tragedy in Uvalde on May 24, which involved the death of 19 children and two teachers. They were killed when an 18-year-old gunman opened fire with an AR-15-style rifle inside Robb Elementary School.
“Can you imagine standing helplessly behind a police line as gunshots are fired near your daughter’s classroom?” Trahan said. “Can you imagine having to identify the unrecognizable body of your missing baby girl or baby boy by their favorite shoes? And can you imagine standing in line for a DNA test praying to God that it does not come back a match?
“Pass this legislation so no parent in America ever experiences this horrific reality again,” she said. “Our children are counting on us and they are watching.”
The Protecting Our Kids Act would raise the age limit for purchasing a semi-automatic weapon from 18 to 21. Authorities said the suspects in the shootings in Uvalde, and at the Buffalo supermarket, were both 18 when they bought the semi-automatic weapons used in the attacks.
The legislation would additionally prohibit the sale of ammunition magazines with a capacity of more than 15 rounds.
The House bill also includes incentives designed to increase the use of safe gun storage devises and creates penalties for violating safe storage requirements, providing for a fine and imprisonment of up to five years if a gun is not properly stored and is subsequently used by a minor to injure or kill themselves or another individual.
It also builds on executive actions banning fast-action “bump stock” devices and “ghost guns” that are assembled without serial numbers.
Five Republicans voted for the bill: U.S. Reps. Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, Chris Jacobs of New York, Adam Kinzinger of Illinois and Fred Upton of Michigan. Only Fitzpatrick is seeking re-election. On the Democratic side, U.S. Reps. Jared Golden of Maine and Kurt Schrader of Oregon were the only no votes.
The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration, but is expected to have almost no chance of being passed. The Senate is pursuing negotiations focused on improving mental health programs, bolstering school security and enhancing background checks. But the House bill does allow Democratic lawmakers a chance to frame for voters in November where they stand on policies that polls show are widely supported.