U.S. Senate passes first gun control bill

The United States Senate has passed a bill that would see gun control measures put in place at the state level.

The bill will now have to pass in the House of Representatives before President Joe Biden can sign it into law.

On Thursday night, the Bipartisan Gun Safety Bill passed by a vote of 65-33. The law would mandate states to pass red flag laws and set up background checks for 18- to 21-year-olds, among other measures.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said after the Senate vote that “the Rules Committee will meet to advance this life-saving legislation to the Floor” first thing on Friday morning.

Mr Biden reacted to the development, urging the House to act quickly on the bill. The House and Senate will embark on a two-week recess after Friday.

“Tonight, after 28 years of inaction, bipartisan members of Congress came together to heed the call of families across the country and passed legislation to address the scourge of gun violence in our communities. Families in Uvalde and Buffalo – and too many tragic shootings before – have demanded action. And tonight, we acted,” Mr Biden said in a statement.

The bill also includes increased funding for mental health and school safety and will tighten a federal ban on domestic abusers buying firearms, and reinforce laws against straw purchasing and trafficking of guns.

The decision came on the same day that the Supreme Court struck down a New York law that placed strict limits on carrying guns outside the home. It followed negotiations between 10 Republicans and 10 Democrats after multiple mass shootings such as the attacks at Buffalo, New York and Uvalde, Texas, last month. 

Today marks one month since 19 children and two adults were killed at Robb Elementary in Uvalde.




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