Republicans and the NRA Open to Banning Bump Stocks Is Encouraging

In the wake of the mass shooting in Las Vegas that has thus far, caused the death of nearly 60 people and injured hundreds more, we are encouraged to see Republican lawmakers and the NRA say they will consider banning bump stocks.A bump stock is an inexpensive attachment that enables a semi-automatic rifle to simulate the effect of a fully automatic rifle. The device replaces the standard rifle stock, which is held against the shoulder. It frees the weapon to slide back and forth rapidly, harnessing the energy from recoil when the weapon fires. The stock "bumps" back and forth between the shooter's shoulder and trigger finger, causing the rifle to shoot rapidly.Since it technically does not convert a semi-automatic rifle to an automatic, the device, according to the ATF, is legal. We recognize that they may be fun to use for some recreational shooters. But after having seen the level of carnage Stephen Paddock was able to inflict in just nine minutes using these devices, it seems imperative to do everything possible to restrict their use. Two Republicans in Congress, Bill Flores of Texas and Carlos Curbelo of Florida, have stepped outto say they support banning the device. While other GOP members of Congress haven't gone quite that far, we're pleased that other Republicans - including Texas Sen. John Cornyn - say they are open to the possibility of banning the device."I own a lot of guns, and as a hunter and sportsman, I think that's our right as Americans," Cornyn said, "but I don't understand the use of this bump stock."Cornyn has asked Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, to convene a hearing to explore the issue of banning bump stocks - and possibly other issues that arise from the Las Vegas investigation.   Continue reading...

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