A spokeswoman for Sen. Chuck Grassley, Iowa Republican and ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, accused Democrats of playing games on gun control Tuesday by planning to dump a background check on the GOP at a Thursday committee meeting.
The Senate Judiciary Committee announced it would take up four gun-related bills Thursday, including one from Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, titled the Fix Gun Checks Act of 2013. As drafted, the bill is a two-page measure expressing support for background checks.
But Grassley spokeswoman Beth Levine said that sounds like a placeholder bill, which will allow Mr. Schumer to drop a new version on his colleagues at Thursday’s meeting.
“When the committee notices legislation for markup and the text isn’t readily available, there are some shenanigans going on,” Ms. Levine said. “For instance, we were told that when it was noticed, Senator Schumer’s bill, as written now, is intended solely as a placeholder for another bill with text that is not yet released.”
Though the committee is scheduled to begin the debate on Thursday, any member may request that action be delayed for a week. Republicans haven’t yet decided whether they will ask for the delay.
Mr. Schumer has been engaged in lengthy negotiations with fellow Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Republican Sens. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Mark Kirk of Illinois on background checks. One issue that has dogged the talks in recent days has been the record-keeping on gun sales.
Asked Tuesday at the Capitol about his work with Mr. Coburn, Mr. Schumer declined comment before entering an elevator with other senators.