A bipartisan group of more than 200 mayors, led by U.S. Conference of Mayors President and Rochester Hills Mayor Bryan Barnett, is calling on the U.S. Senate to reconvene and pass gun control legislation.
The group includes 214 mayors from across the country, including Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, Flint Mayor Karen Weaver, Lansing Mayor Andy Schor and Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss. Other Michigan mayors signing on were from Kalamazoo, Flint, Muskegon, Rochester Hills, Rochester, Burton and Westland.
Barnett, a Republican who has been mentioned as a potential candidate for Oakland County executive, and the other mayors urge the Senate in their letter to “immediately call the Senate back to Washington to take action on bipartisan gun safety legislation.” It cites two bills: H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Check Act of 2019, and H.R. 1112, the Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2019.
Both bills, despite the former’s title, passed with almost exclusively Democratic support. The letter argues that if H.R. 1112 “had been law in 2015, the terrible tragedy that occurred at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston might have been avoided.”
On Wednesday, all seven Democratic members of Michigan’s congressional delegation called on the Senate to vote on their legislation.
In an interview with the Advance Monday, freshman Democratic U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.) called on U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to allow it to be brought to the Senate floor.
“I say put it on the floor and let folks vote,” Peters said. “Let people vote yes or no, and let them go back to their states and explain their vote. I would think that a lot of my colleagues are not going to want to explain a vote against something that 90% of their people back home think is a good idea. I know they wouldn’t want to explain it.”