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Senators ask for committee vote on 'red flag' bills after shootings

Senators ask for committee vote on 'red flag' bills after shootings
© Greg Nash

Two senators are asking Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamThe unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her  The Memo: The GOP's war is already over — Trump won Michael Flynn flubs words to Pledge of Allegiance at pro-Trump rally MORE (R-S.C.) to give their "red flag" bills a vote in the wake of last weekend's back-to-back mass shootings. 

Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinSenate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap Lawmakers react to guilty verdict in Chauvin murder trial: 'Our work is far from done' Senate Democrats call on Biden to restore oversight of semiautomatic and sniper rifle exports MORE (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the panel, sent a letter to Graham on Monday asking for a vote on her extreme risk, or "red flag," bill. 

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"Given the President’s statement in support for these laws today, I again request that you put the Extreme Risk Protection Order Act on the agenda to be considered as soon as possible," Feinstein wrote in the letter. 

Feinstein's bill, which is backed by 25 Democratic senators and Independent Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBriahna Joy Gray: Biden campaign promises will struggle if Republicans win back Congress Biden backs COVID-19 vaccine patent waivers McConnell sidesteps Cheney-Trump drama MORE (Vt.) and Angus KingAngus KingDC mayor admitted to Democratic governors group amid statehood fight Democrats fret over Biden spending Schumer works to balance a divided caucus's demands MORE (Maine), would allow states to use grants to develop red flag laws that allow family members to petition courts for an order preventing someone from purchasing a gun. The state laws could also let family members petition for an order for law enforcement to remove a firearm. 

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioThe unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her  Crist launches bid for Florida governor, seeking to recapture his old job The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Trump, Cheney trade jabs MORE (R-Fla.) also urged Graham to take up his separate "red flag" bill, noting he had asked the committee to bring it up months ago. 

"My bi-partisan 'Red Flag' law was filed 18 months ago & again earlier this year. We asked Senate Judiciary to take it up as few months ago. I hope they will now do so. Identifying & stopping a killer before they act is best way to prevent these tragedies," Rubio tweeted

Rubio's bill is backed by Sens. Jack ReedJack ReedOvernight Defense: Gillibrand makes new push for military sexual assault reform | US troops begin leaving Afghanistan | Biden budget delay pushes back annual defense policy bill Biden budget delay pushes back annual defense policy bill Senate Democrats push Biden over raising refugee cap MORE (D-R.I.), Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsMcConnell sidesteps Cheney-Trump drama Romney defends Cheney: She 'refuses to lie' The Memo: Trump's critics face wrath of GOP base MORE (R-Maine) and King, which would also use grants to encourage states to pass "red flag" legislation. 

The push for Graham to give the two bills a vote comes as Graham announced on Monday that he would be introducing "red flag" legislation "in the very near future" with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). 

“I spoke with the President this morning about this proposal and he seems very supportive," Graham said earlier Monday. 

Graham is one three GOP senators tapped by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Memo: The GOP's war is already over — Trump won Biden: GOP in the midst of a 'mini-revolution' Ernst defends Cheney, calls for GOP unity MORE (R-Ky.) to do bipartisan brainstorming about potential responses to the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. 

"I asked them to reflect on the subjects the president raised within their jurisdictions and encouraged them to engage in bipartisan discussions of potential solutions to help protect our communities without infringing on Americans’ constitutional rights," McConnell said in a statement.

In addition to Graham, McConnell said he spoke with Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Chairman Lamar AlexanderLamar AlexanderThe Republicans' deep dive into nativism Senate GOP faces retirement brain drain The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the National Shooting Sports Foundation - CDC news on gatherings a step toward normality MORE(R-Tenn.) and Commerce Committee Chairman Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerBiden visits local Mexican restaurant to highlight relief program Pelosi slams McCarthy for promoting COVID-19 relief provision OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Haaland reverses Trump effort on tribal land | Senate confirms Janet McCabe as deputy EPA chief | Study finds quick action on methane could significantly cut into global warming MORE (R-Miss.).