NRA backs restricting bump stocks, device used by Las Vegas shooter to speed firing
The National Rifle Association is calling for additional regulation on bump stock devices, which are used to make a gun fire like a fully automatic one, after a gunman used the device to open fire on a crowd of 22,000 people in Las Vegas.
Police say, along with the bump stock device, Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock had 23 guns in a hotel room overlooking the Route 91 Harvest music festival. He was found dead in his hotel room from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after killing 58 people and wounding over 450 more.
A bump stock is a device that can be attached to the butt of a rifle, allowing it to fire like an automatic weapon. It can reportedly allow a gun to shoot hundred of rounds per minute.
The debate on whether the bump-stock devices should be sold rose in the days after the shooting, with Democrats also calling for stricter gun laws as well.
“In Las Vegas, reports indicate that certain devices were used to modify the firearms involved,” NRA’s Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox said in a statement on Thursday.
“The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations.”
Ongoing coverage of the Las Vegas shooting
While the White House has said it was too soon to talk about gun regulations, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said they welcomed the talk about gun modifiers.
“We know that members of both parties and multiple organizations are planning to take a look at bump stocks and related devices,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters on Thursday.
“We certainly welcome that and would like to be part of that conversation,” Sanders said.
Democratic house leader Nancy Pelosi also called for the ban of the device, as well as other more comprehensive gun legislation.
“We take an oath to protect and defend the American people, we’re not protecting them by not having the gun laws that are suitable to avoid gun violence,” she said, as reported by CBS.
She also called on House leader Paul Ryan to stop a bill that would reduce restrictions on gun-silencers.
For his part, Ryan has said he’d be open to a vote on banning the bump stock devices.
Some American gun stores are reporting that bump stocks, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire as quickly as machine guns, are selling out following the shooting.
Gun sales typically rise after mass shootings, as many buyers believe the government will pass legislation to regulate or ban guns. After the Las Vegas shooting, share prices in gun companies rose sharply, as investors bet fear will lead to a surge in gun sales.
The statement from the NRA said the right to sell bump stock devices was approved during the Obama-era.
The association bans the use of these devices in some of their own firing ranges, Politico reports.
*With files from Katie Dangerfield
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