House Republicans Could Vote to Make Future Shootings Worse

Written by SK Ashby

Republicans will never support even the thinnest measure of gun control even after the worst shooting in modern history or a shooting in which they are the victims, but they might make future mass shootings more deadly.

House Republicans are scheduled to pass a bill this week that will make it legal to buy silencers in every state and remove restrictions from purchasing them.

The GOP-sponsored bill, the Sportsmen Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act (SHARE Act), would remove gun silencers from the list of items regulated by the 1934 National Firearms Act. Under current law, silencers , which reduce the noise emitted from firearms, are regulated as strictly as machine guns and short-barreled rifles.

The National Rifle Association’s top legislative priority this year has been to roll back the regulations on what they call noise suppressors. The gun lobby claims the restrictions are costly and unnecessary since silencers are rarely used to commit crimes.

Silencers are "rarely used to commit crimes" because they're illegal in the largest states from New York to California. They're also tightly controlled even in states where they are currently legal.

The amendment to remove silencers from the list of regulated weapons was sponsored by Representative Jeff Duncan (R-SC) who dubbed it the "Hearing Protection Act" because, according to him, it will protect hunters from deafness. That's what earplugs and headphones are for, but Duncan's amendment will do more than that; it will also remove and refund the fees paid buy those who buy silencers.

The GOP bill would preempt all state and local laws, because they love federalism, right? Maybe not so much.

Even if the vote on their silencer bill is delayed this week, I don't expect they'll give it up entirely. The bill was first introduced in January of this year so they've clearly been very patient. They won't be happy until it is legal to purchase rocket launchers.