NRA opposes new age limits on gun purchases

NRA opposes new age limits on gun purchases
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The National Rifle Association (NRA) said Wednesday it opposes any new legislation that would put age restrictions on firearm purchases. 

“We need serious proposals to prevent violent criminals and the dangerously mentally ill from acquiring firearms,” NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker said in a statement.

“Passing a law that makes it illegal for a 20-year-old to purchase a shotgun for hunting or adult single mother from purchasing the most effective self-defense rifle on the market punishes law-abiding citizens for the evil acts of criminals,” she added. 

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Any law that requires an individual to be 21 or older to buy a firearm “effectively prohibits” adults aged 18-20 from buying a firearm, Baker said, “thus depriving them of their constitutional right to self-protection.”

The NRA comments come following a new push for legislation to curb gun violence after 17 people were killed last week at a high school in Parkland, Fla. 

The alleged gunman, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, was able to legally purchase the AR-15 used in the mass shooting.

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) said Wednesday he is working on legislation with Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) to increase the minimum age to buy a rifle.

Flake wrote in a tweet that he is "working with [Feinstein] on a bipartisan bill that will raise the minimum purchase age for non-military buyers from 18 to 21 — the same age you currently have to be to purchase a handgun."

During a listening session at the White House, a parent of a survivor at last week's high school shooting on Wednesday asked President Trump to impose age restrictions on gun purchases, saying if an individual can't purchase alcohol, they shouldn't be able to buy a gun.