The nation’s gun laws are front and center, as a survivor of the Las Vegas mass shooting sues those she claims are responsible.
On Wednesday, a college student injured in the massacre filed a lawsuit against various parties, including bump stock manufactures, claiming they were liable in the shooting.
Democrats and some Republicans have set their sights on bump stocks–the devices that enable semi-automatic weapons to fire rapidly in a way similar to an automatic weapon.
Twelve bump stocks were recovered in the Las Vegas gunman’s hotel room.
Bump stocks are legal but automatic weapons are banned. Lawmakers want to know why devices that convert guns into automatic weapons are on the market.
“We are still trying to asses why the ATF let this go in the first place. It makes sense that this is a regulation that probably shouldn’t have happened in the first place,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said.
Ryan and other Republicans pointed out that the Obama administration’s AFT ruled that they would not regulate bump stocks because they are a firearm part.
Now there’s a push to get the current ATF to reverse that ruling. Gun control advocates say bump stocks violate the spirit of the ban on automatic weapons.
“It literally turns it into a rapid fire machine. As a consequence, you could discharge as many a hundred bullets in 7 seconds. Tell me, what sportsman, what hunter, what person seeking self-defense needs that kind of capacity?” U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said.
In response to the Vegas massacre, Sen. Durbin is backing several federal gun control measures.
“We have to step up as a nation and make a sane responsible response to this terrible massacre,” he said.
Here in Illinois, there is a push to toughen gun laws.
On Wednesday, state representative and candidate for attorney general Scott Drury, introduced a bill to ban bump stock. Drury said he intentionally limited the legislation so that lawmakers will have to answer yes or no on whether they support bump stocks.
The Illinois State Rifle Association opposes a state solution to bump stocks. They’d rather the AFT take a look.
“The ATF can review their decision, take comments, and they can regulate them that way. There’s no need to make 50 different laws,” Richard Pearson, Illinois State Rifle Association, said.
The gun control talk only goes so far. This Friday, Illinois gun rights supporters will be flexing their muscles. The Lake County Republicans are holding a “Second Amendment Dinner and Gun Raffle.”
A $2,000 sponsor gets an AR-15 rifle.