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Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks Announcing Senate Democrats Will Seek Passage Of A Federal Ban On Bump Stocks

Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor urging his Republican colleagues to support a federal ban on bump stocks following the recent MAGA Supreme Court decision that overturned regulations on bump stocks that were put in place during the previous administration. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:

Last Friday, the MAGA Supreme Court struck once again, saying the federal government cannot prohibit the use of bump stocks, the accessory responsible for the deadliest shooting in American history.

Nearly seven years ago, a lone shooter fired over 1,000 rounds in just ten minutes upon a crowd of concertgoers in Las Vegas. Sixty innocent people were murdered. Another 850 were injured. This was all possible because the shooter modified his rifles to function essentially as machine guns. The ATF under the Trump Administration banned the use of these accessories shortly after the Las Vegas shooting.

Yet on Friday, the MAGA court reached the incredible conclusion that weapons modified to act like machine guns, to fire bullets at almost the same rate as machine guns, and which in Justice Alito’s own admission do not show “any material difference” with machine guns are somehow not machine guns, which have been banned for a very long time, since the ‘30s.

Friday’s ruling is yet another warning that this MAGA court is going off the deep end, aligning itself more and more with the most extreme elements of the hard-right. They have struck down freedom of choice, environmental protections, affirmative action, fair redistricting, gun safety, and more. The MAGA Supreme Court is now even further to the right of Donald Trump, who's very hard-right himself .

So this week, the Senate will step in to try and fix the chaos the MAGA court just unleashed.

As soon as tomorrow, Democrats will seek passage of a federal ban on bump stocks, and I urge my Republican colleagues not to block Senator Heinrich when he comes to the floor. He is the author of this bill and leading the charge to get it passed quickly.

Passing a bill banning bump stocks should be the work of five minutes. Most Americans support this step. Poll after poll show that a majority of people, including independents, support restrictions on AR-15-style rifles, which is what bump stocks are designed to emulate.

I understand that the issue of gun safety provokes intense disagreement in Congress. But shouldn’t we all agree that preventing another tragedy like Las Vegas is just plain common sense and a good thing? Banning bump stocks would go a long way to making it harder for murders to carry out large shootings, so I hope our Republican colleagues join us.

Two years ago this month, Democrats and Republicans showed America that even something as controversial as gun safety can get passed when both sides are willing to work in good faith. I was very proud as Majority Leader, and proud of members like Senator Murphy, who worked hard on passing this legislation. Democrats are ready to pass gun safety once again as soon as tomorrow. The question is, are Republicans ready join us?

Will Republicans join us to prevent another tragedy like Las Vegas, and vote to ban deadly bump stocks? Republicans were supportive on banning bump stocks when the Trump Administration took this step, so they should support it tomorrow.

Will Republicans stand up to the gun lobby and side with parents and teachers and law enforcement who worry violence striking their communities without warning?

Will Senate Republicans resist the pull of MAGA extremism and embrace bipartisanship so once again we can keep people safe?

I hope the answer is yes. I hope we can repeat the success of two years ago, when we passed the first major gun safety bill in 30 years, since I led the passage of the Brady Bill in Congress. I was a Congressman then.

We have a long way to go to cure America’s disease of gun violence. Today you don’t need to show people the statistics – Americans know gun violence is disgustingly unacceptable.

They can feel it in their bones.

They are worried about where they go.

They go to public spaces and instinctively look for the exits.

Sometimes just a loud noise can frighten people in public.

And now this MAGA court has undone the ban on bump stocks that will make it easier for deranged individuals to turn their weapons into near-machine guns.

If my Republican colleagues want to do the right thing for the country, the answer is very simple: join us, every one of you, to ban bump stocks, so we never see the kind of carnage we saw in Las Vegas Nevada ever, ever again.