Democrats 'Confident' They Have Votes to Bring Gun Control Bill to Senate
Senate Democrats are "confident" they have the votes to bring gun control legislation to the Senate floor. At least 14 Republicans have threatened to filibuster the legislation, but eight Republicans "have said they will not attempt to block an effort to bring up the measure, a senior Democratic aide said."
The staffer noted statements by Republican Sens. John McCain (Ariz.), Dean Heller (Nev.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Susan Collins (Maine), Pat Toomey (Pa.), Mark Kirk (Ill.) and Kelly Ayotte (N.H.) indicating they would not support a filibuster of moving to the gun bill.
Although Reid does not have a formal whip count yet, ' “He’s always been confident that he can get 60 votes,” the aide said.'
President Obama spent Tuesday making phone calls to Republicans and Democrats, trying to garner support for the bill. Eleven family members of the Newtown tragedy were flown to Washington DC on Monday to help with the lobbying efforts.
A main point of contention is the kind of background checks to be included in the legislation. Democrats want to force a vote on the background checks proposed by Chuck Schumer (D-NY) which passed the Senate Judiciary along partisan lines. Senator Manchin (D-W.Va.) was still negotiating with Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) to work on the language of the bill. Toomey and Manchin will hold a press conference at 11amET today to discuss their deal, which has the blessing of Schumer.
If the gun control legislation does make it to the floor, there is no guarantee the legislation will ultimately pass.
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