May 25, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Schumer accuses GOP of choosing NRA over American people

enate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., conducts a news conference after senate luncheons in the U.S. Capitol, on Tuesday, May 24, 2022.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday slammed Republicans on the hill who he says "care more about the NRA," one day after an attack at a Texas elementary school killed at least 19 children and two adults.

Driving the news: Schumer seemed to indicate that he wants to push for gun legislation before the Senate considers the House-passed background check bills that have failed to garner necessary Republican support in the past.

  • The Senate still seems poised to break for Memorial Day recess, but Schumer said the caucus will address gun control legislation when it returns on June 6.
  • Schumer and other Democrats remain skeptical they will be able to reach a compromise, but the majority leader said he plans to push forward with “accountability” votes in the Senate that would force Republicans to go on the record to vote no if they can't reach a deal.
  • Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, also said that he will work with his Democratic colleagues to schedule a hearing on gun violence when his colleagues return from Memorial Day recess.

What he's saying: "Too many senators on the other side of the aisle are disconnected from the suffering of the American people. Too many members on that side care more about the NRA," Schumer said on the Senate floor.

  • "America's gun epidemic is unmatched from any of our peer nations in the world," he added.
  • "These types of shootings used to be rare. So rare that each occurrence stood apart as a singular event. But now these shootings happen so frequently the people of this nation can barely keep up."
  • "Honestly, I thought Sandy Hook 10 years ago would be the breaking point," Schumer said.

What to watch: Schumer is also set to hold a vote on the House-passed Domestic Terrorism Act on Thursday, which was spurred by the mass shooting in Buffalo, New York.

  • Schumer on Wednesday asked McConnell — who said this morning that he was “sickened” by the shooting in Texas — if he would join with Democrats in passing the bill.
  • The bill received little GOP support in the House and as of Tuesday was unlikely to garner many Republican votes in the Senate.

Go deeper ... Failed gun legislation is the norm after mass shootings

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