Joe Biden: Senate Bipartisan Gun Control Agreement Not Enough but ‘Let’s Get this Done’
President Joe Biden announced Sunday his support of the Senate bipartisan gun control agreement, despite his misgivings that it was not enough.“Obviously, it does not do everything that I think is needed, but it reflects important steps in the right direction, and would be the most significant gun safety legislation to pass Congress in decades,” Biden said in a statement.The agreement does not include Biden’s demands for a ban on so-called “assault weapons,” raising the minimum age to 21 for the purchase of some semi-automatic rifles, or banning high-capacity magazines.
But Biden urged Congress to pass the legislation, thanking Republicans for working with Democrats to get something done.“With bipartisan support, there are no excuses for delay, and no reason why it should not quickly move through the Senate and the House.,” he wrote.The agreement offers support for states to enact red flag laws and also requires an enhanced background check for gun buyers under 21 that include juvenile and mental health records.“Each day that passes, more children are killed in this country: the sooner it comes to my desk, the sooner I can sign it, and the sooner we can use these measures to save lives,” Biden wrote.Biden also endorsed the bill on social media.
“It does not do everything that I think is needed, but it reflects important steps in the right direction,” he wrote. “With bipartisan support, there are no excuses for delay. Let’s get this done.”
A bipartisan group of 16 senators released the details of an agreement on Sunday afternoon:
Support for State Crisis Intervention Orders
● Provides resources to states and tribes to create and administer laws that help ensure deadly weapons are kept out of the hands of individuals whom a court has determined to be a significant danger to themselves or others, consistent with state and federal due process and constitutional protections.
Investment in Children and Family Mental Health Services
● National expansion of community behavioral health center model; major investments to increase access to mental health and suicide prevention programs; and other support services available in the community, including crisis and trauma intervention and recovery.
Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence
● Convicted domestic violence abusers and individuals subject to domestic violence restraining orders are included in NICS, including those who have or have had a continuing relationship of a romantic or intimate nature.
Funding for School-Based Mental Health and Supportive Services
● Invests in programs to expand mental health and supportive services in schools, including: early identification and intervention programs and school based mental health and wrap-around services.
Funding for School Safety Resources
● Invests in programs to help institute safety measures in and around primary and secondary schools, support school violence prevention efforts, and provide training to school personnel and students.
Clarification of Definition of Federally Licensed Firearms Dealer
● Cracks down on criminals who illegally evade licensing requirements.
● Invests in programs that increase access to mental and behavioral health services for youth and families in crisis via telehealth.
Under 21 Enhanced Review Process.
● For buyers under 21 years of age, requires an investigative period to review juvenile and mental health records, including checks with state databases and local law enforcement.
Penalties for Straw Purchasing
● Cracks down on criminals who illegally straw purchase and traffic guns.
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and U.S. President Donald Trump listen during a meeting with bipartisan members of Congress and then-President Donald Trump to discuss school and community safety in the White House in Washington, D.C. on February 28, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
The bipartisan agreement was agreed to by Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT), John Cornyn (R-TX), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Richard Burr (R-NC), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Susan Collins (R-ME), Chris Coons (D-DE), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Angus King (I-ME), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Rob Portman (R-OH), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Pat Toomey (R-PA).