Senate Judiciary Committee holds hearing on bump stocks - Erie News Now | WICU & WSEE in Erie, PA

Senate Judiciary Committee holds hearing on bump stocks

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Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are considering whether to ban 'bump stocks'. This comes as government agencies open a review exploring whether the gun accessory is banned under federal law.

This investigation was prompted by the October Las Vegas mass shooting at an outdoor country music concert. The gunman, Stephen Paddock, used this type of device in a massacre that left 58 dead and hundreds injured.

Wednesday, the Senate Judiciary committee called a hearing to consider policy options.

“None of us want to be forgotten," said Heather Gooze, who survived the shooting, during her testimony.

She says she strongly supports Second Amendment rights but wants to see action taken on bump stocks.

"I ask that the committee not forget all of the lives that were lost that day, all of the lives affected that day and all the lives that could be affected in the future," said Gooze.

Tuesday, the ATF and Department of Justice announced they're launching a review of the bump stocks and whether they're illegal under the National Firearms Act.

The bump stocks can be attached to semi-automatic rifles to pull a trigger faster.

"I believe we must pass this legislation so the law is clear: bump stocks do not belong in our country," said Democratic Nevada Senator Catherine Cortez Masto.

GOP committee chair, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, says he wants Congress to thoughtfully review the issues at hand, but not make any hasty decisions.

“All of us wish that the recent tragedies in Texas and Nevada could’ve been avoided," said Grassley. "We must wield our legislative power carefully, particularly where it involves the fundamental liberties of our republic."

Another concern raised by Grassley: even if Congress banned bump stocks, the ATF confirmed at the hearing a similar tool could be made using 3-D printing technology.

The ATF says it might take months to clarify whether bump stocks are legal.

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