By Pete Kasperowicz - 09/27/13 12:59 PM EDT
House Republicans on Thursday introduced legislation that would end the ban on carrying firearms on military bases in response to this month's shooting spree on a Washington, D.C., naval base that left 13 dead, including the shooter.
Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas) proposed the Safe Military Bases Act, H.R. 3199, along with six other House Republicans. Stockman said the bill would reverse the Clinton-era gun policy that he said has led to two mass shootings on bases.
"Our disarmed military bases are vulnerable targets for terrorists, as we saw in Fort Hood and the Navy Yard," Stockman said Thursday. "Despite that, soldiers trained to use guns cannot carry on base.
Stockman said it makes no sense to allow civilians to carry concealed weapons in public, while members of the military who are trained in firearms use cannot carry weapons while on base. Critics of this policy argued in the wake of last week's shooting that the event took place in a "gun-free zone," even though it was a military base, the Washington Navy Yard.
"Saving lives by allowing trained soldiers to carry firearms should be an easy fix," he said. "No reasonable person can oppose that."
His bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Michael Burgess (R-Texas), Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), Doug LaMalfa (R-Calif.), Pete Olson (R-Texas), Bill Posey (R-Fla.) and Randy Weber (R-Texas).