WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A divided Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday backed President Barack Obama’s call to require criminal background checks for all gun buyers, yet it remained uncertain if it would become law.
On a party-line vote of 10-8, the Democratic-led panel sent the measure to the full Senate where it faces a possible procedural roadblock that could kill it.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday backed President Barack Obama’s call to crack down on the clandestine trafficking of firearms, marking the first votes in Congress on gun-control since a school massacre last year prompted calls for action.
On a largely party-line vote of 11-7, the Democratic-led committee approved a bill to make it a federal crime to engage in “straw purchasing,” or buying of guns on behalf of those who are prohibited from owning them.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democratic Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, a leading voice on national security who opposed the Iraq War and has fought corporate abuse during more than three decades in the chamber, said on Thursday he would not seek re-election next year.
“This decision was extremely difficult because I love representing the people of Michigan in the U.S. Senate and fighting for the things that I believe are important to them,” Levin, 78, said in a statement issued by his office.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Less than three months after the Connecticut school shooting, a campaign to tighten gun laws that is backed by President Barack Obama will go to its first votes in Congress on Thursday when a Senate panel meets.
The Democrat-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to approve the four bills that make up the gun-control package in voting over the next day or so.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The top Republican on the Democrat-led U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee said on Tuesday that he may back at least two of the four gun-control bills that the panel will consider this week.
Iowa Senator Charles Grassley’s support could help both measures – one aimed at cracking down on illegal gun trafficking, the other designed to bolster security at schools – pass the Senate.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Congress is getting an earful about the big spending cuts beginning to hit government services from worried and irate constituents, including one senator’s own spouse.
Democratic Senator Thomas Carper of Delaware said his wife, “my most important constituent,” asked him, “Why can’t you guys get your act together? Do you know what people think of you guys?”
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday postponed consideration of four bills to curb gun violence after Republicans said they needed more time to study the proposed ban on military-style assault weapons.
The one-week delay by the Democratic-led committee appears unlikely to change the fate of the bills, all of which appear headed to the full Senate for a vote.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The House of Representatives gave final approval on Thursday to a bipartisan bill to renew the landmark 1994 Violence Against Women Act, after rejecting as inadequate an alternative version offered by its Republican leaders.
On a vote of 286-138, the House sent the bill, earlier approved by the Democratic-led Senate, 78-22, to President Barack Obama to sign into law.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The father of a 6-year-old boy who was killed in the shooting massacre at a Connecticut school made a dramatic appeal on Wednesday for President Barack Obama’s uphill bid to ban sales of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.
Testifying before a divided U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Neil Heslin, whose son Jesse Lewis was murdered in the December 14 shootings that killed 20 children and six adults, joined an emergency room doctor in recalling the damage done by such a weapon. Heslin held up a picture of his son during his testimony and at times his voice choked with emotion.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s fellow Democrats in the Senate have spread his gun-control proposals across four bills in an effort to get at least some of the less controversial measures – such as expanded background checks for gun buyers – passed into law.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will vote as early as Thursday on the bills, which together amount to an acknowledgement by Democrats that a ban on military-style “assault” weapons is unlikely to clear Congress.