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On Gun Control Legislation, N.C. Congressional Lawmakers Split Along Party Lines

March 15, 2021
In The News

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The scenes are all too familiar: mass shootings in America.

On Capitol Hill, with Democrats in charge of both chambers, lawmakers are once again looking to enhance gun control measures. But the effort is sparking a familiar divide.

On two recent background check bills, North Carolina lawmakers in the U.S. House were split along party lines. Democrats voted for the bills, while Republicans opposed them. The House as a whole was similarly divided.

“This is to protect families, children, people going to church, people going to school,” said Rep. Kathy Manning, D-6th District, who supported the measure.

“Unfortunately, the Democrats in Congress are not serious about ending gun violence,” said Rep. Richard Hudson, R-8th District, who was among those arguing against them.

One of the bills extends the period of time the FBI has to complete a background check. The other expands which gun purchases require background checks.

“When I talk to people at home, most people think that that's already the rule,” Manning said. “They can't believe that people are allowed to buy guns without undergoing background checks.”

Republicans, though, argue the legislation infringes on the rights of law-abiding gun owners and question whether they would have realistically prevented past mass shootings.

“The Democrats are concerned about taking away our Second Amendment rights,” Hudson said.

Both bills are now in the Senate for consideration, where they face an uncertain fate.

While Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, D-NY, has indicated he plans to move ahead with the legislation, Democrats would need Republican buy-in to get past the filibuster.