House To Vote On Gun, Mental Health Bills After Democrats’ Sit-In

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A week after House Democrats staged a nearly 26-hour sit-in demanding a vote on gun control measures, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wi.) said there will be a vote next week on legislation to block suspected terrorists from buying guns, reports The Hill.

Ryan told rank-and-file Republicans yesterday that the House will take up a terrorism package that will include measures to disrupt radicalization and recruitment, as well as a provision to prevent suspected terrorists from purchasing guns. Democrats launched a daylong protest on the House floor last week demanding a vote on such legislation after the Orlando nightclub shooting rampage that killed 49.

Ryan reiterated that it’s important to ensure suspected terrorists can’t obtain guns, calling it common sense. He said he wanted to approach the issue deliberatively to protect due process and Second Amendment rights. The House next week will also take up a bipartisan bill from Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) that seeks to address gun violence by overhauling the mental health system.

A Democratic source said the more controversial gun-purchase provision may be similar to a bill sponsored by Sen. John Cornyn (T-Tx.) that’s backed by the National Rifle Association. Democrats say the Cornyn bill doesn’t go far enough because it includes a “probable cause” standard that would require law enforcement officials to prove that a gun buyer is an actual terrorist rather than a suspected terrorist. Democrats want a vote on legislation that would bar firearm sales to anyone on a terrorism watch list or no-fly list.

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