House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) said Tuesday that Republican leaders have no plans to advance a bill that would make it easier for Americans to buy gun silencers.
The focus on the legislation, which passed a House committee last month, was magnified Monday after the Sunday night shooting in Las Vegas that left at least 59 dead and hundreds injured.
“That bill is not scheduled now; I don’t know when it’s going to be scheduled,” Ryan said. “Right now we’re focused on passing our budget.”
The Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act passed the House Natural Resources Committee on a party-line vote last month. Owning a firearm silencer requires a special license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, similar to the regulations surrounding machine guns and explosives. The House bill would instead treat silencers, also known as suppressors, like firearms — requiring only a federal background check.
The legislation also includes provisions that would loosen restrictions on transporting firearms across state lines and prevent certain types of ammunition from being designated as “armor-piercing” and thus subject to tighter federal oversight.
Opponents of the measure say that the silencer provision, in particular, could make it harder to identify a shooter during an incident such as the one in Las Vegas.
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