Today, after the Senate failed to pass a bipartisan agreement on background checks reached by Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) by a vote of 54-46, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), a former federal prosecutor and outspoken advocate for gun safety legislation, issued the following statement:
"What happened this afternoon in the Senate is an appalling defeat for common sense and gun safety. The victims of Newtown, of Aurora and other gun violence tragedies deserve a vote on a comprehensive gun safety package -- including universal background checks, a ban on assault weapons and extended ammunition magazines and the expanded access to mental health treatment. More than half the Senate, along with 90 percent of the American people, support a compromise to expand background checks to unregulated gun shows and websites that sell millions of weapons, but a minority who feared a negative score from the NRA blocked the bill's progress.
"While it may have failed today, Senate leaders must not give up the fight for universal background checks and other vital gun safety measures -- gun violence victims and their families deserve a better vote and result than this."