Today, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) joined with his colleagues led by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) as an original cosponsor of a renewed Assault Weapons Ban. This bill will specifically ban the sale, transfer, importation or manufacturing of over 100 specifically-named firearms and strengthens the 1994 law by moving from a 2-characteristic test to a 1-characteristic test and eliminating the ten year sunset that allowed the original ban to expire. Further, the legislation will protect responsible hunters and gun owners by exempting hundreds of specifically-named weapons used for hunting and sporting purposes and grandfathering weapons legally possessed on the date of enactment.
"Senator Feinstein led the charge almost twenty years ago to pass the Assault Weapons Ban, but it has since been allowed to expire. It is past time to put that law, which would have outlawed the type of gun used by the shooters at Aurora and Newtown, back in place," said Rep. Schiff. "Beyond the Assault Weapons Ban, we need to use a multifaceted approach, including universal background checks, making sure we keep better mental health records, banning high capacity ammunition clips, going after straw purchasers, and eliminating the gun industry's ability to act negligently with impunity. No one thinks that this fight is going to be easy, but who can be content to do nothing in the face of one awful tragedy after another."
Specifically, this legislation would accomplish several important steps in curbing future gun violence and tragedies:
Ban the sale, transfer, importation or manufacturing of about 150 named firearms, plus certain rifles, handguns and shotguns fitted for detachable magazines and having at least one military characteristic;
Strengthen the 1994 ban by moving from a two- to a one-characteristic test to determine what constitutes an assault weapon;
Ban firearms with "thumbhole stocks" and "bullet buttons;"
Ban the importation of assault weapons and large-capacity magazines; and
Ban high-capacity ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds.