December 7, 2023 |

Photo – AR type rifles – Courtesy Pew Pew Tactical

In Washington on Wednesday, senate Democrats introduced a bill last week to regulate firearms by outlawing weapons with a magazine capacity over 10 rounds, among other measures.

The Gas-Operated Semi-Automatic Firearms Exclusion Act (GOSAFE) bill targets firearm mechanisms, instead of implementing restrictions based on how firearms look. It places a ban on magazines larger than 10 rounds, bans modifications like bump stocks and bans the manufacture of ghost gun kits — build-at-home firearms without serial numbers.

Critics say the bill would ban most semi-automatic rifles in the United States. Rather than prohibit cosmetic features, the new legislation targets a firearm’s operating system. The actual text of the bill widens the scope to include virtually every type of semi-auto system.

Wyoming Senator John Barrasso stood against the legislation in the well of the U.S. Senate on Wednesday.

The bill’s authors, U.S. Senators Angus King (I-Maine) and Martin Heinrich (D-NM), wrote the bill in response to a recent mass murder in Lewistown, Maine, that left 18 people dead.

Opponents argue that the bill is unconstitutional because it would ban an entire class of firearms that are in common use, which the Supreme Court rejected in District of Columbia v. Heller. The GOSAFE Act would ban a majority of AR-type rifles used by hunters across the country.

The GOSAFE Act would need at least nine Republican votes to pass the Senate and a majority of representatives in the Republican-controlled House.

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