The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bipartisan bill to address gun violence today. All House Democrats and 14 Republicans voted for the legislation, and the final vote was 234-193. This marks the first major gun safety legislation since the 1994 assault weapons ban.
North Carolina’s three Democratic representatives — Alma Adams, G.K. Butterfield and David Price — all voted in favor of the bill. The state’s eight Republican representatives voted against the bill.
The “Bipartisan Safer Communities Act” cleared the U.S. Senate yesterday. North Carolina Republican Sen. Thom Tillis and Sen. Richard Burr voted in support of the bill. Burr, whose Senate seat is up for election this year, is not seeking reelection.
This comes after a recent string of mass shootings — most notably in Buffalo, New York, Uvalde, Texas, and Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The bill includes roughly $13 billion dollars in funding for mental health, school safety, crisis intervention programs and state incentives to include juvenile records in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
The bill also makes significant changes to the process of buying a firearm for those aged 18 to 21.
It closes the “boyfriend loophole,” which formerly allowed unmarried partners with a history of domestic abuse to purchase a gun. The bill provides grants to states to adopt “red flag” laws, which allow courts to remove firearms from those deemed a threat to themselves or others.
The bill now heads to President Joe Biden for his signature. He is expected to sign.