Lawmakers in the House of Representatives voted mostly along party lines on Wednesday to approve the Protecting Our Kids Act.
The legislation seeks to raise the legal age to buy some semi-automatic rifles to 21, penalize violations of safe gun storage requirements, and strengthen federal regulations on bump stocks and ghost guns, or guns without serial numbers.
But the bill is unlikely to make it past the Senate, where Republicans are pushing instead to boost mental health programs, strengthen school security, and improve background checks.
Wednesday’s vote came after a House committee listened to gut-wrenching testimonies from survivors and families affected by gun violence, including last month’s school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
What happened at the committee hearing? Speaking by video, Miah Cerrillo, 11, told lawmakers on the House Oversight and Reform Committee she watched the Uvalde attacker kill her teacher and then smeared herself with a classmate’s blood to play dead.
A Uvalde pediatrician said he received unidentifiable bodies at the hospital following the shooting. Other family members from Uvalde and Buffalo tearfully pleaded for stricter gun controls.
This story originally appeared in WORLD. © 2022, reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.