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NRA calls for regulation of 'bump stocks' after Las Vegas massacre

07 October 2017

United States lawmakers bolstered efforts Thursday to ban devices used by the Las Vegas shooter to make his guns fire faster, while the National Rifle Association unexpectedly urged federal officials to review the legality of such modifications.

As police search for more clues into what drove Stephen Paddock to murder 58 people and wound almost 500 at a country music concert, President Donald Trump's White House also announced it was "open" to further debate about the devices. The stock "bumps" back and forth between the shooter's shoulder and trigger finger, causing the rifle to shoot rapidly. "They make the gun pretty uncontrollable", said Baenziger.

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She also called on House leader Paul Ryan to stop a bill that would reduce restrictions on gun-silencers.

While the call surprised many given the NRA's reluctance to endorse previous reforms after mass-shooting tragedies, the group also called on Congress to pass legislation requiring states to recognize other states' concealed carry permits, suggesting they may use the bump stock proposal as bargaining.

A bump stock is an low-priced attachment that enables a semi-automatic rifle to simulate the effect of a fully automatic rifle. She authored legislation to ban assault weapons in 2013 that failed in the Senate, 40-60.

Curbelo plans to offer a bill to ban bump stocks and says his office has heard from many lawmakers, both Republicans and Democrats, who are interested in it.

Craig Baenziger, a manager at Northeast Trading Company in North Attleboro, told the Herald that bump stocks could easily be handmade out of PVC and that his shop has never sold them. The NRA supported expanded background checks in the 1990s, but objected to the actual proposed details of the legislation. It can reportedly allow a gun to shoot hundred of rounds per minute.

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"But one of the difficulties we often have in terms of getting compromise in this area is that people who advocate different measures themselves frankly admit it's just the first step towards something stricter".

"I think this is about chipping away at the Second Amendment", said Senator John Kennedy, referring to the clause in the US Constitution which guarantees citizens the right to bear arms.

The NRA might argue that rate-of-fire laws would put semi-automatics in jeopardy of legal regulation.

The Gun Owners of America, a national organization with 1.5 million members, published a statement on Thursday saying it opposed any ban on bump stocks because they "help gun owners with disabilities fire their weapons".

"I talked to Chairman [Chuck] Grassley of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and I believe that once the investigation is complete and we learn all aspects of what contributed to this event, then we should have a hearing and look into it", Cornyn said, referring to the Iowa Republican. "I don't think people are aware of this".

The group has been a vocal force in stopping gun control legislation in the aftermath of past mass shootings and in its statement supporting regulation of bump stocks said, "Banning guns from law-abiding Americans based on the criminal act of a madman will do nothing to prevent future attacks".

Sunday's mass shooting, the worst in modern US history, has reignited the debate over gun control.

NRA calls for regulation of 'bump stocks' after Las Vegas massacre