Pro-gun-control Democrats in the Senate are angry with Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) for blocking reauthorization of a law that would ban 3-D printable guns that lack metal parts.
Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) tried to bring up the Undetectable Firearms Act on Thursday evening. The law, which passed in 1988, bans guns that can’t be spotted by metal detectors.
The last reauthorization, in 2003, passed both chambers of Congress unanimously. It sunsets on Dec. 9.
Schumer and Blumenthal argued that reauthorization is needed quickly because of the rapid development of technology in which a 3-D printer can be used to piece together a plastic gun.
“Nothing about this simple and commonsense legislation requires even a moment’s delay or debate,” Blumenthal said this morning.
“Hidden, undetectable firearms serve no purpose other than to make it easier for criminals to take lives. That is why both houses of Congress unanimously approved reauthorization of the law in 2003,” he said. “Delaying these protections simply puts innocent American lives at risk. We need to stop playing politics with public safety and extend these protections immediately.”
Schumer and Blumenthal’s partners on pushing for the extension have been Sens. Pat Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.).
“We are looking at a world in which anyone with a little bit of cash can bring an undetectable gun that can fire multiple bullets anywhere — including planes, government buildings, sporting events and schools,” Schumer said last week. “3-D printers are a miraculous technology that have the potential to revolutionize manufacturing, but we need to make sure they are not being used to make deadly, undetectable weapons.”
While acknowledging that the bill would likely eventually pass, Sessions told Schumer “this is not a good day” for the legislation.
The Dem sponsors tried to bring up the reauthorization after Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) dropped the nuclear option.