October 12, 2017

After Las Vegas Shooting, Kaine & Colleagues Introduce Legislation To Limit Gun Magazine Capacity

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) joined 18 Senate colleagues to introduce the Keep Americans Safe Act, a commonsense bill that bans the importation, sale, manufacture, transfer, or possession of gun magazines that hold more than ten rounds of ammunition and are designed for shooting en masse.  In what is now the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history, 59 people were killed and 527 injured after a gunman opened fire on Las Vegas concert-goers.  According to investigators, the alleged shooter was in possession of more than 23 firearms, including several high-powered assault rifles, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

“Limiting the size of magazines can give law enforcement an opportunity to stop a shooter who is on a rampage,” Sen. Kaine said.  “We should pass this commonsense bill and other measures to curb deadly gun violence like the tragic shooting in Las Vegas last week.  For too long, Congress has done nothing to stop these horrific events. We must do better.”

In addition to prohibiting large-capacity ammunition magazines, the Keep Americans Safe Act includes the following provisions:

  • Provides limited exceptions for devices possessed before enactment, for certain current and former law enforcement personnel, for certain Atomic Energy personnel, for tubular devices that can only accept .22 rimfire ammunition, and for certain authorized testing or experimentation;
  • Modifies the high-capacity definition to prevent coupled or joined magazines;
  • Authorizes buyback programs for high capacity magazines using Byrne JAG grants;
  • Requires devices manufactured after enactment to have conspicuous serial numbers and dates of manufacture to help law enforcement identify restricted magazines;
  • Harmonizes forfeiture provisions for magazines with current law; currently FBI and ATF can seize and destroy certain firearms but not high capacity magazines.

“Large capacity magazines have no place in our communities.  Hunters don't use them. Killers use them to hurt as many people as they can, as fast as they can. Large capacity magazines are a threat to all of us, and to our often outgunned law enforcement community.  That is why Brady is proud to support this legislation,” said Avery Gardiner, co-president of the Brady Campaign.

The Keep Americans Safe Act is cosponsored by Sens. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jack Reed (D-RI), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Al Franken (D-MN), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT.), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ed Markey (D-MA), Patty Murray (D-WA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Tom Carper (D-DE), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Kamala Harris (D-CA).