DeGette, others call on Congress to pass their legislation banning high-capacity magazines

Aug 6, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In the aftermath of three devastating mass shootings in Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton, U.S. Reps. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Dina Titus (D-NV), and U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) are again calling on Congress to pass their bicameral legislation to ban high-capacity gun magazines that hold more than 10 rounds.

“Yet again, we are grieving the tragic loss of life due to multiple mass shootings. Thoughts and prayers are not enough. It’s past time for Congress to act on gun safety measures,” DeGette said. “One of the most important things we can do, right now, is ban these high-capacity magazines that hold more than ten rounds. There is no legitimate reason for any citizen to need a high-capacity magazine.”

“High-capacity magazines are used for one sole purpose: to maximize casualties. Tragically, that’s why these magazines are used so frequently in mass shootings,” Deutch said. “We can reduce the magnitude of death and injury caused in mass shootings while still respecting law-abiding gun owners. It’s time to move on this commonsense legislation.”

“The senseless mass shootings in Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton provide three more tragic examples of why firearms with high-capacity magazines have no place in our communities,” Titus said. “We don’t want to see any more examples. Families in Las Vegas and across the country know all too well the deadly consequences of inaction.”

"A shooter with a high-capacity magazine killed nine people in less than a minute. Republican silence is acquiescence,” said Menendez. “High capacity magazines are good for only one purpose: high capacity killing. But I hope that the senseless tragedies of this past weekend moves the hearts of those who have been opposed to action on reasonable gun safety measures, such as our legislation to eliminate high capacity magazines. Congress can save lives, if it chooses to act. Yet, we will only see change when the Senate Majority Leader and his Republican colleagues care more about American lives than they do their NRA rating.“

A common thread found in many of the nation’s most high-profile mass shootings in recent years has been the use of high-capacity magazines that hold more than 10 rounds and enable a shooter to fire dozens of rounds without having to stop and reload.

In Dayton, Ohio, the mass shooter used a high-capacity rifle equipped with a 100-round drum magazine, which enabled him to fire 41 rounds in 30 seconds. In El Paso, Texas, and Gilroy, California, both shooters are believed to have used an AK-47 style assault rifle, another high-capacity rifle.

The legislation introduced by DeGette, Deutch, Titus, Menendez, and others in February 2019 – known as the “Keep Americans Safe Act” – would reinstate the nation’s ban on the sale, transfer or possession of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds.

The legislation, however, would not apply to high-capacity magazines already legally owned before the bill is enacted. It also would not apply to any military or law enforcement officers who use high-capacity magazines in their official capacity.