Two Major Gun Control Bills Unveiled by Congressional Democrats

Two Major Gun Control Bills Unveiled by Congressional Democrats

Gun Rights

Two potentially sweeping gun violence prevention bills were introduced to Congress Thursday. If passed, the legislation would overhaul screening requirements for prospective gun buyers and prohibit the dissemination of digital files or code that could be used to 3D-print firearms. The first bill, the Handgun Purchaser Licensing Act, would incentivize state and local governments to implement a requirement that would-be gun owners first obtain a license before making a purchase. The 2019 introduction of this bill in the House by Jamie Raskin and in the Senate by Chris Van Hollen — both Democrats — followed a Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research study which found that purchaser licensing is the only effective method of screening potential gun buyers. "Handgun licensing saves lives for the same reason drivers’ licensing saves lives," Raskin said in a press release. "It takes the dangerous people out of our way as much as possible." Van Hollen said in a press release that "we should be doing everything we can to encourage states to put these [permitting] programs in place," adding that requirements to buy a handgun should be a "no-brainer." There are several ways in which licensing requirements have been shown to reduce gun violence. The most immediate benefit results from the bureaucratic nature of licenses themselves. In order to apply for and receive a license, a prospective gun owner must wait for a longer period of time than they would have to without the licensing requirement, if they are a first-time […]

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