Blog Briefing Room

Gingrich: Banning rapid fire gun modification is 'common sense'

Former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Wednesday that it is "common sense" for Congress to ban the type of device used by the the Las Vegas gunman to enable a semi-automatic gun to shoot more rapidly.

"Look, if there is something that makes it easy to convert a semi-automatic into an automatic, then maybe that does have to be looked at and put under the Federal Firearms Act, which makes it illegal to have a genuinely automatic weapon," Gingrich said on Fox News.

"I think this is as technology changes, sometimes we have to change the rules to catch up with those technologies," he continued.

Gingrich's comments came after Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas), the former chairman of the Republican Study Committee, similarly called for the devices known as bump stocks, to be banned. Republicans are increasingly supporting such a ban, despite party opposition to expanding overall gun restrictions in the wake of the deadly shooting.

Twelve of the rifles found in the hotel room where 64-year-old Stephen Paddock carried out a mass shooting at a music festival in Las Vegas were modified with bump stocks, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire much faster.

The shooting left at least 59 people dead and more than 500 others injured. Paddock was found dead in his room at the Mandalay Bay when SWAT teams stormed the hotel.

While it is illegal for private citizens to possess fully automatic weapons manufactured since 1986, bump stocks remain legal, even though they allow guns to fire at nearly the same rate as a machine gun.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) introduced legislation on Wednesday that would make it illegal to modify semi-automatic weapons to shoot like automatic weapons. That measure would also ban bump stocks and other devices.

Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.) plans to introduce bipartisan legislation to ban a bump stocks in the House within the next few days.

Outbrain
View desktop version