SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi renewed calls for background checks and a House committee to study gun violence, following Sunday night’s mass shooting at a Las Vegas music festival that killed over 50 people.
In a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan, Pelosi said, “Congress has a moral duty to address this horrific and heartbreaking epidemic.” The representative from San Francisco said more than 90 Americans are killed each day due to gun violence.
Pelosi called for the passage of a background check bill sponsored by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-California) and Peter King (R-New York) that would expand the current background check system on all commercial gun sales, including sales at gun shows, online and through classified ads.
The bill was introduced in the previous Congress in 2015, but was not brought up for a vote even after Democrats staged a sit-in on the House floor last year demanding a vote.
Pelosi also urged the creation of a bipartisan “Select Committee on Gun Violence” that would “study and report back common sense legislation to help end this crisis.”
“Today is a day for prayer, mourning and love, but it must also be a day for action,” Pelosi said.
Before the shooting, The Associated Press reported that House Republicans were considering bills that would have eased regulations on gun silencers and allow those with concealed-carry permits to take their weapons to other states. Democrats scoffed at the silencer bill, noting a provision that would allow more armor-piercing ammunition. The status of the gun bills is now in limbo.
As of Monday morning, at least 58 people were killed and more than 500 people were injured when a gunman opened fire on a crowd of thousands attending the Route 91 Harvest festival. The massacre is the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
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