Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), a former federal prosecutor and outspoken advocate for commonsense gun safety reform, released the following statement following news that Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) had reached a compromise on background checks:
“While it appears that support for a filibuster against gun safety measures has diminished with today’s compromise – and that is a very positive step – I believe that if we are serious about keeping guns out of the hands of felons and the mentally ill, we need to make sure that a universal background check is just that – universal – and not subject to broad exclusions. Beyond universal background checks, any legislation passed by the Congress should also address the availability of military style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines and the lack of access to mental health treatment.
“I’m also troubled the compromise would seemingly extend the unique and undeserved exemption from civil liability that licensed gun dealers and gun manufacturers enjoy to cover private sellers as well. If we want to encourage sellers to act responsibly and take meaningful steps to stop guns from being used in crimes, extending an unwarranted immunity is counter-productive.”
“It is my hope that both the Senate and the House will proceed by allowing comprehensive measures to come to the floor for a full debate and vote. The President was absolutely correct – the victims of gun violence deserve a vote.”