The US Senate on Thursday evening voted 65-33 to approve the Safer Communities Act – a sweeping gun control legislation that includes “red flag” laws.
All senators who caucus with the Democrats voted “yay” – and 15 Republicans joined the Democrats and voted “yay.”
Here are the 15 Republican Senators who caved and bowed to Democrat demands:
The bill will now head to the House of Representatives for a vote.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said first thing in the morning she will immediately advance the bill through the Rules Committee and bring the bill to the House Floor for a vote.
The bill will then head to Joe Biden’s desk for a signature.
The legislation enhances background checks for prospective gun buyers under 21 years old, closes the so-called “boyfriend loophole,” clarifies the definition of a Federally Licensed Firearms Dealer and creates criminal penalties for straw purchases and gun trafficking. It also provides $750 million in grants to incentivize states to implement crisis intervention programs and provides roughly billions of dollars in federal funding to bolster mental health services for children and families and harden schools.
The Senate’s measure does not go as far as what Mr. Biden has called for and is significantly more narrow than a package of bills that passed the House this month. That legislation would raise the minimum age to purchase a semiautomatic rifle from 18 to 21 years old and ban large-capacity magazines. It also incentivizes the safe storage of firearms and establishes requirements regulating the storage of guns on residential premises.
While the House’s legislation included many of the proposals advocated for by Mr. Biden, it would not have won enough support from Republicans to overcome the 60-vote threshold for legislation to advance in the Senate.