The 10 Gun Bills Introduced on Day One of the New Congress
Massie, an entrepreneur who campaigned for Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), introduced H.R. 133, the Citizens Protection Act of 2013, which would repeal the Gun Free School Zones Act of 1990. Ron Paul originally introduced the bill in 2007.
“A bigger federal government can’t solve this problem. Weapons bans and gun free zones are unconstitutional," Massie said. "They do not and cannot prevent criminals or the mentally ill from committing acts of violence. But they often prevent victims of such violence from protecting themselves.”
Massie voted for libertarian Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) for speaker. Stockman voted "present" after ignoring the first call to vote.
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) introduced a bill, summarized as a resolution "to prevent children's access to firearms," that would raise the legal age to own a firearm from 18 to 21.
Rep. Rush Holt (D-N.J.) introduced the Handgun Licensing and Registration Act, based upon his home state's registration law, to mandate on a federal level licensing and registration of every handgun sold.
“Every day that Congress fails to act to rein in gun violence, 80 more people die by gunfire – whether from homicide, suicide, or accident,” Holt said. “The tragedy at Sandy Hook showed in horrific terms that we have waited far too long to address gun safety. At the very least, we should insist that potentially deadly weapons are licensed and registered in every state in America, as they already are in New Jersey.”
Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), though, eclipsed her colleagues by introducing four pieces of gun-control legislation on Day One.
McCarthy was elected to Congress as a stringent gun-control activist after her husband, Dennis, was killed in a Long Island shooting spree in 1993.
She introduced two bills to ensure that all individuals who should be prohibited from buying a firearm are listed in the national instant criminal background check system and require background checks for every firearms sale, and to require criminal background checks on all firearms transactions occurring at gun shows.
A third McCarthy bill would require face-to-face purchases of ammunition, require licensing of ammunition dealers, and require reporting of bulk ammo purchases.
Rounding out her cache is the High Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act, which gained dozens of co-sponsors in the 112th Congress after the Tuscon, Ariz., shooting in which former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.) was shot in the head.
It would ban the sale or transfer of ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds, a tenet of the decade-long expired assault weapons ban.
“These assault magazines help put the ‘mass’ in ‘mass shooting’ and anything we can do to stop their proliferation will save lives in America,” McCarthy said. “These devices are used to kill as many people as possible in the shortest amount of time possible and we owe it to innocent Americans everywhere to keep them out of the hands of dangerous people. We don’t even allow hunters to use them – something’s deeply wrong if we’re protecting game more than we’re protecting innocent human beings.”
The Senate will not begin introducing legislation until later this month, which means Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D-Calif.) push to renew the assault weapons ban -- and potential companion bills to the aforementioned House efforts -- won't surface for a couple of weeks.