- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Congress cannot duck the issue of expanded background checks in the wake of last weekend’s shootings, Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer said Wednesday, rejecting what he said were GOP plans to pass more limited legislation encouraging states to confiscate guns from dangerous individuals.

The confiscation plans, known as “red flag” laws, have emerged as a favorite solution for Republicans who say it can be done while respecting due process and Second Amendment rights, and could make a difference.

But Mr. Schumer said it would be a “cop-out” to only pass that legislation.

“We Democrats are not going to settle for half-measures so Republicans can feel better and try to push the issue of gun violence off to the side,” he said.

The debate over new gun controls has begun in earnest after shooting rampages in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, left more than 30 people dead this weekend.

Democrats immediately sought a new range of restrictions, with gun confiscation or buyback programs, outright bans on some types of rifles and expanded background checks for purchasers emerging as leading proposals.

President Trump has at times suggested he would embrace expanded background checks, but left that push out of his speech Monday. Instead, he called for a change in U.S. culture, for internet companies to do more to police content, for restraints on violence in video games and for better mental health laws to identify dangerous persons who shouldn’t have access to firearms.

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