(The Center Square) – The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill Thursday, June 9, 2022 to the U.S. Senate raising the age to purchase a rifle from 18 to 21. The House vote 223-204 on Wednesday, June 8, 2022 supported measures that Illinois already has made, including the regulating of unserialized firearms and others in place. Critics argue Illinois, especially Chicago, struggles with gun violence, despite the strict gun laws.
The bill H.R. 7910 [PDF] covers raising the age to 21 for sales of semiautomatic centerfire rifles or semiautomatic centerfire shot-guns, aims to prevent gun trafficking, requires all guns be traceable, requires safe gun storage requirements, aims to eliminate the bump stock loophole, and limits large capacity ammunition feeding devices. The word ‘school’ is not found in the entire document.
Protecting Our Kids Act
H.R.7910 — 117th Congress (2021-2022)
Introduced in House by Representative Jerrold Nadler (New York District 10) on May 31, 2022
This bill makes various changes to federal firearms laws, including to establish new criminal offenses and to expand the types of weapons and devices that are subject to regulation.
generally prohibits the sale or transfer of certain semiautomatic firearms to individuals who are under 21 years of age;
establishes new federal criminal offenses for gun trafficking and related conduct;
establishes a federal statutory framework to regulate ghost guns (i.e., guns without serial numbers);
establishes a framework to regulate the storage of firearms on residential premises at the federal, state, and tribal levels;
subjects bump stocks to regulation under federal firearms laws; and
generally prohibits the import, sale, manufacture, transfer, and possession of large capacity ammunition feeding devices.
As debates across the country continue over gun laws, Chicago has regularly been referenced as an example of high amounts of gun violence in a state with strict gun control measures already on the books.
After the shooting in Uvalde, Texas, that killed dozens of children, Gov. J.B. Pritzker was asked what he is doing to keep the children of Illinois safe.
“One of the ways to keep people safe in schools is making sure we have mental health and substance treatment for kids, and for the adults who work in these schools,” Pritzker said.
The gubernatorial election will be held in November of this year. The primary election is at the end of this month. One of the main topics during the debates has been what to do with gun violence in the state as Illinois currently has the seventh most firearm deaths in the nation, according to the CDC.
The candidates who are running for the GOP nomination were asked about what they would do differently during a recent debate. Attorney Max Solomon suggested fighting fire with fire.
“I have always believed personally that it takes a good guy with a gun to defeat a bad guy with a gun,” Solomon said. “I believe strongly that our schools should not be able to be accessed by bad guys with guns where kids can be shot and killed.”
Another measure Illinois has in place is the Firearms Owner’s Identification, or FOID, card, which includes additional background checks for anyone looking to purchase a gun or ammunition. The system is one that Pritzker said he helped modernize.
“We took a lot of effort into bringing up to date all of the FOID card renewals and CCLs in the state so that’s one thing, is keeping weapons out of the hands of people who should not have them,” Pritzker said.
Some Republicans say the system is broken and an unnecessary step to owning a firearm.
GOP candidate Paul Schimpf said if he is elected governor, he will make changes.
“We need to enforce the background checks but we need to get rid of the FOID,” Schimpf said. “One of the things that I have that my opponents do not is my voting record. You know where I stand on these issues.”
Other candidates vying for the GOP nomination include state Sen. Darren Bailey, R-Xenia, businessman Gary Rabine, Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin, and entrepreneur Jesse Sullivan.
The congressional measure that could raise the age from 18 to 21 for owning a rifle still has a tough test in passing through the Senate in order to be sent to President Joe Biden.
Additional details about the “Protecting Our Kids Act” H.R.7910 — 117th Congress (2021-2022) and some editing of the original article by Andrew Hensel was provided by CARDINAL NEWS.
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