Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Texas unlikely to budge on red flag laws despite Uvalde shooting, federal gun control bill: report

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Texas is unlikely to adopt the red flag law provisions included in the birtisan gun control legislation set to advance in the US Senate Thursday even if the bill fast-tracked after the Uvalde massacre does ss, according to reports.

The current draft of the 80-ge Birtisan Safer Communities Act will make $ 750 million in federal funding available to help states administer a red flag law if they have or ss one – though states without them could also qualify for the money by adopting other unrelated policies to guns.

But the federal legislation, though backed by US Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, will likely be a non-starter for other Republican leaders in Texas given the backlash Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott received when he asked the state legislature to consider red flag laws four years ago, The Texas Tribune reported.

Though the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 children and two teachers dead was one of the inspirations for lawmakers on Capitol Hill to draft the Birtisan Safer Communities Act, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan trick said in a recent radio interview he still opposes red flags as rt of a legislative solution.

TEXAS OFFICIAL: UVALDE SHOOTER DRIVEN BY SOCIAL MEDIA FAME, ABHORRENT BEHAVIOR WENT UNCHECKED FOR MONTHS

“After the Santa Fe shooting, we had the same move to do this and we didn’t support it,” he said in a radio interview. trick, who presides over the state Senate and holds a strong influence over which legislation is considered, said if he were in the US Senate, he would have been among the 36 Republicans, including Sen. Ted Cruz, to vote against the federal proposal Tuesday.

Cornyn, who received boos and jeers from the crowd while delivering remarks at the Texas GOP convention last week, has spearheaded Republican negotiations on the federal proposal while insisting that it would not introduce a national red flag law for those 31 states without state-level versions. .

This file photo shows Texas Lt.  Gov.  Dan trick speaks in the state Senate chamber on the first day of the 87th Legislature's third special session at the State Capitol on September 20, 2021, in Austin, Texas.

He has insisted it would be up to state legislatures and noted that federal funding could be used for “law enforcement-related grants to crisis intervention programs, whether you adopted a red flag program or not.”

The nation’s first red flag law was ssed in Connecticut in 1999, allowing police – but not medical professionals or family members – to ask a judge for permission to seize the guns of a person believed to be imminently dangerous to themselves or others.

In the subsequent two decades, a handful of other states ssed similar laws, and for some states, people besides the police – such as family members – can petition the courts to have guns taken away or prevent an individual from buying guns if they’re believed to be a danger to themselves or others.

In 2018, the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in rkland, Florida, srked a new crop of red flag laws. By the end of 2021, 19 states and the District of Columbia had ssed similar legislation. Not every state is on board, however: In 2020, Oklahoma banned its counties and municilities from ssing red-flag laws.

The bill is to be considered in the US Senate Thursday even after the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 the same day that New Yorks regulations, which made it difficult to obtain a license to carry a concealed handgun, were unconstitutionally restrictive, and that it should be easier to obtain such a license.

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