House Not To Debate Guns Before Summer Recess

Keep up the pressure, so that the topic is not considered when they return to DC.

The House will not vote on gun-control legislation this week before heading home for the summer because Republican leaders say now is not the time for a political debate over an issue that has stoked tensions across the country after a series of deadly shootings.

Democrats derided the decision and are promising to find ways to keep the issue alive during the seven week congressional break.

In response to last month’s mass killings in Orlando, House Republicans crafted a counterterrorism package that included a National Rifle Association-backed provision to prevent suspected terrorists from purchasing firearms.

That bill stalled because of objections from conservatives and Democrats, and the question of how to respond to gun violence grew only more intense after the the fatal police shootings of two black men in Louisiana and Minnesota and the killing of five police officers in Dallas last week.

On Tuesday, House leaders said they would not move the counterterrorism package in the next few days for fear of inflaming an already contentious national debate.

“Right now, what we want to do is have a good conversation where we calm things down and we talk about solutions, about how we can better improve our communities and the relationship between law enforcement and the communities,” Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) said.

House leaders would not predict whether the bill would resurface when Congress returns in September, but some members said the chances of that are slim.

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