Grassley-Cruz gun bill allows interstate transport of firearms

Sens. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyOvernight Health Care — Sponsored by Amgen — House passes bill to stop drug companies overcharging Medicaid | Incoming Dem chairman open to 'Medicare For All' hearings | Bill to reduce maternal mortality rates passes House House passes bill to keep drug companies from overcharging Medicaid Pence casts tie-breaking vote for Trump appeals court judge MORE (R-Iowa) and Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzDems attracted to O'Rourke because he demonstrates civility, says political analyst Gillum to speak at gathering of top Dem donors: report O'Rourke edges out Biden in MoveOn straw poll MORE (R-Texas) will unveil an alternative gun control bill on Wednesday that includes provisions making it easier to purchase and transport firearms across state lines.

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According to details provided by a source close to the negotiations, the bill would allow for the interstate sale of firearms, and for the interstate transportation of firearms providing certain conditions are met. Guns transported across state lines will have to be unloaded, locked in a vehicle or kept in the trunk.

Another pro-gun provision of the bill will allow military members to buy guns in the states where they’re stationed.

The announcement comes on a day when the Senate appears likely to block further debate on a bipartisan background checks bill. The Grassley-Cruz legislation shifts the debate from focusing solely on gun control reforms, to an area of debate that the 113th Congress hasn’t considered – reforms that ease restrictions on firearms.

In addition to the pro-gun measures, the Grassley-Cruz bill addresses some of the gun control reforms that have so far proved more palatable for senators weary of committing to comprehensive reform.

The bill would increase the resources available to prosecutors for violators of gun laws, and creates a “Cruz Task Force” to prosecute those who fail criminal background checks. The task force is funded through an Asset Forfeiture Fund.

The bill criminalizes straw purchasing and trafficking, measures Grassley supported in committee hearings on the gun control bill that will go before the Senate later this month. It also seeks to increase safety at schools, keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill, and increases accountability for prosecutions at the executive level by requiring the Department of Justice to submit reports to Congress.

Grassley and Cruz will hold a press conference at 10:30 on Wednesday to unveil the legislation.