Arizona Rep. Raúl Grijalva blasted his Republican counterparts during an environmental committee hearing Thursday for ignoring gun control in the wake of a school shooting in Florida.
“There is an irony today, we are at the dawning of another senseless mass murder,” the Democratic congressman said, referencing a shooting at a Florida high school Wednesday that left at least 17 dead. Grijalva also railed against those who won’t use the shooting as an opportunity to ram gun control legislation through Congress.
“[T]here will be a lot of talk about mental health, and then we’re going to ask people to be more vigilant. But nothing else,” he said. There will not be any attempts to prohibit “bump stocks” or institute universal background checks, he added.
A bump stock dramatically increases a semi-automatic weapon’s rate of fire as the device allows the natural recoil of the gun to “bump” the shooter’s trigger finger. It essentially makes the rifle nearly indistinguishable from that of a fully automatic weapon. The rifle can still be designated a semi-automatic rifle since the finger, not the weapon, is responsible for pulling the trigger.
Grijalva, the top Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee, then awkwardly tried to connect the shooting to Democrats’ conservation efforts. Instead of doing some constructive, he said, the Republican majority on the committee will push bills to “allow silencers on public land, to allow armor-piercing ammunition, to allow lead contamination, once again, to kill wildlife.”
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