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Extension of Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988 for 10 Years

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Speaker, as a Senior Member of the Judiciary Committee and the sponsor of numerous legislative proposals to reduce gun violence, I rise in strong support of extending H.R. 3626, the ``Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988'', which bans guns that can pass unnoticed through a metal detector. I support this legislation because it will help reduce gun violence and keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of terrorists. Gun violence has affected many of our districts and continues to be a pernicious problem on the national stage to which we have to address.

Every day 45 people are shot or killed because of an accident with a gun. When firearms are in the home they are 22 times more likely to be used in homicides, suicides, and accidents than in instances of self-defense. Even though 34 percent of American children live in a home with a gun, fewer than half of those homes store firearms in a way that denies access to children, meaning that guns are locked, unloaded, and separated from ammunition.

Mr. Speaker, the ``Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988'' was originally passed in 1988 and signed into law by President Reagan. It was reauthorized in 1998 and 2003. Unless reauthorized, the ban on undetectable firearms expires this week, on December 9, 2013. It is therefore imperative that we act now to extend the ban so we can reduce gun violence and enhance the safety of our first responders.

While we cannot stop every instance of gun violence, we can help reduce their prevalence. By acting now with this legislation, we can institute common-sense standards that are focused on protecting our nation from violence by those who would do us harm, without infringing on Americans' Second Amendment rights.

H.R. 2665 and H.R. 3626 can go a long way towards making our homes, schools, and streets safer for families across this country. We may not be able to prevent every gun-related tragedy from occurring in the future, but we have a responsibility to implement reasonable, common-sense standards so that innocent lives will not continue to be lost.

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