Rep. Lois CappsLois Ragnhild CappsDem lawmaker wants federal laws rewritten with gender neutral terms Dems pressure Fiat Chrysler to support recalled rental ban GOP chairman: Feds dropped the ball in Calif. oil spill MORE (D-Calif.) has introduced legislation to help ensure that people convicted of domestic violence cannot obtain guns.

Federal statute already prohibits domestic violence offenders from owning guns. But Capps said that her measure would close loopholes that allow people to go around the law, potentially endangering victims from their abusers who may be seeking retribution.

"Existing federal laws designed to protect victims of domestic violence from gun violence are important, but gaps remain," Capps said in a statement. "This commonsense legislation would close these loopholes to better protect victims and survivors of domestic violence and help save lives."


Capps's bill would expand the definition of "intimate partner" to include current and former dating partners, rather than limiting it to spouses, former spouses, co-parents and cohabitants. It would also prevent individuals under temporary restraining orders, instead of only permanent restraining orders, from possessing firearms.

In addition, the measure would include stalking as a form of domestic violence that merits banning a person from owning a gun.

Multiple groups that advocate support for domestic violence have endorsed the legislation, including the National Domestic Violence Hotline, National Network to End Domestic Violence, National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, National Center for Victims of Crime, Futures Without Violence and Casa de Esperanza.

Capps had introduced the bill in the last Congress, but it did not receive any legislative action.