Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) conducted a full committee meeting Thursday to vote on bipartisan gun legislation designed to curb illegal gun trafficking and purchasing.
The committee recessed until Tuesday, March 12, without completing its work on gun legislation and a variety of nominations. Last week, the committee held a hearing on the proposed "Assault Weapons Ban of 2013."
As reported in the Washington Times, "the legislation combines a measure introduced earlier in the session by Mr. Leahy and Mr. Durbin with a separate measure introduced by Ms. Gillibrand and Mr. Kirk that would punish the original seller in such an illicit transaction, or someone who 'knowingly' facilitates straw purchasing."
The bill would toughen the penalties for those who purchase a gun illegally for others to up to 15 years and make gun trafficking a felony. It has attracted the most bipartisan support so far of four measures headed for the committee.
The specific bills the committee plans to cover include: S.150, Assault Weapons Ban of 2013 (Sen. Feinstein); S.54, Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act of 2013 (Sen. Leahy); S.374, Protecting Responsible Gun Sellers Act of 2013 (Sen. Schumer); and S.146, School Safety Enhancements Act of 2013 (Sen. Boxer).