A group of House Republicans bucked their party to vote on gun legislation on Wednesday, supporting measures taken after mass shootings in Buffalo, New York and Ovaldi, Texas last month.
A notable piece of legislation passed for the Chamber was the Protect Our Children Act, a body of law that seeks to tighten gun restrictions. Among the provisions are raising the minimum age for purchasing a semi-automatic weapon from 18 to 21 and banning civilians from using high-capacity magazines.
The legislation is doomed to failure in the Senate due to broad Republican opposition. The package was approved in the House of Representatives in a largely partisan vote by 223 to 204. Not a single Republican voted.
Five Republicans defected from the party in support of the measure: Representatives. Adam Kinzinger (Illinois), Anthony Gonzalez (Ohio), Brian Fitzpatrick (Pennsylvania), Chris Jacobs (New York) and Fred Upton (Michigan).
Kinsinger, Gonzalez, Jacobs and Upton are not all seeking re-election this year. Jacobs withdrew from his bid for another term last week after he came under fire within the party for expressing support for an assault weapons ban.
Representatives voted in favor of the package despite the party leadership’s call against the legislation. The office of Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) sent a memo to House Republican offices on Tuesday encouraging members of Congress to vote “no” to the sweeping measure.
“In the aftermath of the foolish and malevolent shootings seen in recent months, a majority has pieced together this reactionary package of legislation that flagrantly violates the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens and impedes Americans’ ability to defend themselves and their families,” the memo says.
In addition to voting on the entire package, the board also voted on each individual item. However, the full package is the only legislation that will be sent to the Senate for consideration.
Last week, Minority Leader Steny Hoyer (D) said the House of Representatives would vote on each item “to put Republicans on record on each of these gun safety issues.”
Six of the seven items passed in largely partisan votes, with only a few Republicans joining the Democrats. However, the latest ruling enjoys broad bipartisan support. Orders the attorney general to submit a report to congressional committees detailing individuals who were unable to purchase a firearm because they failed a background check.
re \ come back. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, recommended that members vote against the first six provisions, but indicated support for the last provision.
Kinzinger, Fitzpatrick, and Jacobs supported all six items that Jordan recommended to the Congress against. A number of other Republicans joined the trio in voting for some individual measures.
The provision that would impose a ban on shock storage for civilians garnered the most Republican support among the measures Jordan recommended a vote against.
The initiative passed by 233–194 votes, with 13 Republicans bucking the party: Representatives. Mike Turner (Ohio), John Katko (New York), Anthony Gonzalez (Ohio), Chris Jacobs (New York), Nicole Malliotakis (New York), Chris Smith (New Jersey), Maria Salazar (Florida), David Valadao (California), Ken Calvert (California) David Joyce (Ohio), Kinzinger, Upton and Jacobs.
The item calling for the minimum age to purchase a firearm from 18 to 21 was acquitted by a vote of 228-199. Ten Republicans supported the effort: Turner, Catko, Upton, Gonzalez, Fitzpatrick, Kinzinger, Jacobs, Malliotakis, Smith and Salazar.
The list of GOP defectors was similar to the measure that untraceable firearms and rifles that do not have serial numbers, also referred to as ghost weapons, undergo background checks and receive serial numbers.
The House passed the ruling by a vote of 226–194, with eight “yes” votes: Fitzpatrick, Kinzinger, Jacobs, Katko, Malliotakis, Upton, Gonzalez and Smith.
Regarding the provision creating new federal offenses of gun trafficking and buying firearms from straw, which is when people unable to clear background checks buy firearms through an agent, 7 Republicans bucked the party to support the measure in a vote of 226-197.
Fitzpatrick, Kinzinger, Malliotakis, Gonzalez, Jacobs, Salazar and Katko voted “yes.”
Four Republicans voted in favor of the provision calling for a ban on civilian use of ammunition magazines containing more than 15 rounds: Kinsinger, Jacobs, Upton and Fitzpatrick. The measure passed by a vote of 220 to 207.
The ruling with the least GOP support seeks to promote safe storage of guns in homes where minors have access to firearms. Kinzinger, Fitzpatrick, and Jacobs were the only dissenters from the Republican Party. However, this effort eventually passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 220-205.