Reid: GOP 'damaged' its brand by rejecting background checks amendment

On Wednesday, the Senate rejected a background check amendment to the Senate gun control bill on a 54-46 vote, 60 votes were needed for passage. Only four Republicans voted with most Democrats.

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The bipartisan amendment from Sens. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) and Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) would have expanded background checks to gun purchases online or at gun shows. At the request of GOP senators, it also explicitly prohibited the creation of a federal gun registry.

Reid warned that any time 90 percent of the public supports legislation that it will inevitably pass.

“Yesterday, the families of gun violence victims watched as Republicans defeated a common-sense proposal to expand background checks that has the support of 90 percent of Americans,” Reid said. “But make no mistake: this debate is not over. This is not the end of the fight.”

The rejection of the bipartisan background check amendment essentially killed the chances of passing the Safe Communities, Safe Schools Act, S.649, which would expand background checks on gun purchases, crack down on gun trafficking and beef up security in schools. Some GOP senators have said the bill goes too far and infringes on the rights of gun-owners.

The Senate has voted on seven amendments to the gun control bill, all of which failed to reach a 60-vote threshold. The Senate also turned away proposals on an assault weapons ban, banning high-capacity clips, preserving gun rights for veterans, among others. Two more amendments will be voted on Thursday, but neither is likely to pass.

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