“Our current legal system makes an arbitrary distinction between protections for dating partners and protections for spouses and ex-spouses, creating a loophole in our gun laws and increasing danger for domestic violence victims and survivors. This is wrong and that’s why I authored the Domestic Violence Survivors Protection Act, which would ensure that all abused women, whether married or not, are provided the same protections,” Capps said.
The bill also allows for an emergency hearing to trigger a temporary prohibition on possession of a firearm before a full hearing on a restraining order can be scheduled.
“This bill would provide greater security for domestic violence survivors by protecting them during the time when they are most at risk, in the minutes, hours and days immediately after leaving a violent partner,” Capps added. “An abusive ex-boyfriend with a gun is no less lethal than an abusive ex-husband with a gun. It is time for federal law to join 18 states in recognizing that reality.”
The Connecticut senators’ broader push for gun control after the December shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary culminated in Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) yanking the sweeping bill in April after gun-rights Democrats supported Republicans in blocking the Toomey-Manchin compromise amendment on background checks.
Four Democrats voted “no” on the amendment, which needed 60 votes: Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Max Baucus (D-Mont.), Mark Begich (D-Alaska) and Mark Pryor (D-Ark.). Reid voted no as a procedural move that allows him to bring the bill back later. Four Republicans voted “yes”: Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.).
A Blumenthal amendment to limit ammunition magazines to ten rounds also failed 46-54.
Blumenthal and Murphy drew some criticism during the gun-control debate for having families from the Newtown shooting at press conferences, lobbying on Capitol Hill, and filling the gallery during votes.
In May, Murphy called new NRA president Jim Porter “really kind of the wing nuts’ wing nut.”
“And he exposes what the NRA has really become. I mean, the NRA kind of announced this weekend they’re morphing into a paramilitary group, that essentially they’re going to be advocating for armed resistance to the U.S. government,” Murphy said. “…So, when you got an NRA president going out there and saying we need to arm Americans in order to fight our government, well, that sells a lot more guns and that means more dues into the NRA and that means a little bit bigger budget to play with.”
Before the Senate recessed last week, Reid told Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense In America that he expects the gun bill including the expanded background checks to return to the Senate floor — not anytime soon, but in time for midterms.
“I think sometime next year we’ll revisit that issue,” Reid said, according to The Nation. “I’m almost certain of it.”