Gov. Wolf to U.S. Senate: ‘Now’s Your Chance to Stand Up for Americans,’ Commends House for Passage of Gun Violence Prevention Act

June 08, 2022

Harrisburg, PA – Following the House Democrats passage of the Protecting Our Kids Act, a comprehensive package of legislation to prevent continued gun violence in America, Governor Tom Wolf today called on the U.S. Senate to also take life-saving action.

“Americans have had enough gun violence-fueled tragedy and death, ​and I commend the House for pressing forward and passing this package of legislation that undoubtedly has the potential to save lives,” said Governor Wolf. “Now, we all look to the U.S. Senate to stand up for Americans, we are all counting on you to vote like the lives of our children, our future, depend on it.”

House Democrats today passed the Protecting Our Kids Act, it now falls to the U.S. Senate to pass the package and protect Americans with the following bills:

  • Title I, the Raise the Age Act, would raise the lawful age to purchase semi-automatic centerfire rifles and shotguns from 18 to 21 years old. Currently, someone has to be 21 years old to purchase a handgun, but they can purchase a semi-automatic rifle or shotgun at age 18.
  • Title II, the Prevent Gun Trafficking Act, establishes new federal offenses for gun trafficking. It specifically addresses “straw purchasers”, who purchase guns for those who cannot pass a background check such as a convicted felon or minor.
  • Title III, the Untraceable Firearms Act, closes the ghost gun loophole by amending the definition of a “firearm” under federal law to include gun kits and partial receivers and by changing the definition of “manufacturing firearms” to include assembling firearms using 3D printing technology.
  • Title IV, the Safe Storage Act, provides federal standards for safe gun storage on residential premises and also gives states incentives to create and implement safe gun storage laws. It also imposes a penalty of up to five years in prison if a child or other ineligible resident accesses an unsecured firearm and causes injury or death.
  • Title V, the Closing the Bump Stock Loophole Act, defines bump stocks and lists them under the National Firearms Act so that they are regulated the same as machine guns.
  • Title VI, the Keep Americans Safe Act, prohibits the importation, sale, manufacture, transfer, or possession of a magazine that holds more than 15 rounds of ammunition unless an individual falls under a particular exemption.

This legislation closely mirrors Governor Wolf’s top gun violence prevention priorities that Pennsylvania’s Republican-Controlled General Assembly refuses to take action on:

  • Creating red flag laws to protect those who may be a danger to themselves or others.
  • Required reporting for lost and stolen guns within 72 hours.
  • Closing loopholes and require background checks on all gun sales.
  • Requiring safe storage of firearms to keep guns out of the wrong hands to prevent accidental injury/death and suicides.
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