Sen. Kyrsten Sinema says bipartisan gun bill won’t take away Arizonans’ rights
PHOENIX — U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona promised Wednesday the bipartisan gun bill she helped author that will likely be signed into law will not take away rights from Arizonans.
Sinema, speaking on the Senate floor, said her commitment to maintaining gun rights while responding appropriately to recent mass shootings in Texas and New York comes from her background as the sister of a police officer and growing up in a family of gun owners.
“I know how fundamental the Second Amendment is to families across Arizona,” Sinema, a Democrat, said. “Arizonans have a constitutional right to bear and keep arms and that right will not be infringed upon.”
The 80-page bipartisan bill would toughen background checks for the youngest firearms buyers, require more sellers to conduct background checks and beef up penalties on gun traffickers.
It also would disburse money to states and communities to improve school safety and mental health initiatives.
Sinema said that bill discussions were centered around protecting constitutional rights while reducing violence.
“All of these tools together will give families in Arizona and across our country more peace of mind so they can trust that their communities are secure and their schools are safe,” Sinema said.
Congress hasn’t enacted major firearms restrictions in nearly 30 years, but the bill has the support of over 60 senators and is also expected to pass in the Democratic-led house.
Sinema, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) led the charge for the legislation.
“Our bipartisan bill demonstrates the difference that elected leaders can make in the lives of our constituents when we choose to heal our divisions instead of feed those divisions,” Sinema said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.