The top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee said Tuesday he would not support legislation that would mandate background checks at gun shows and online purchases, calling it “an unworkable and unenforceable law.”
“It’s the height of irresponsibility, and it’s not going to do anything to stop the violence,” Rep. Paul Ryan Paul Davis RyanTrump orders review of VA health care law after CDC chief resigns Trump admin puts DHS in charge of border security Ryan backs bill to give Puerto Rico power to negotiate with feds over water sources Ryan says he’s voting for Kavanaugh MORE (R-Wis.) told reporters Tuesday.
“I’m not going after guns, and I think it’s important to understand that, but the way I see it is if you have a person that’s on a list and there’s a gun, they should be able to get a gun.
They should not be able buy a gun if they have that type of a record.””
I think the only people that should be allowed to have a gun are the law abiding,” Ryan said.
“If we’re going to have guns, we need to enforce the law, and so the only way you can do that is by having people who are on a background check, who have a background, and who can come into the United States legally and lawfully buy a firearm.”
Ryan added that the measure would “probably” have the same effect as the Senate bill, which the White House has described as a compromise between Republicans and Democrats.
Ryan said he doesn’t know why the measure was not approved in the House, noting that he has never met a gun owner who opposes the measure.
“I don’t know what happened, but I have never met an American who has opposed the bill,” Ryan added.
“So I can’t tell you what the answer is.”
Ryan’s comments came as gun control advocates were hoping the House would approve legislation requiring background checks on all gun purchases.
The White House and Democrats have been pushing the measure, which would be introduced on Monday, as a way to prevent more people from dying from gun violence.
The House passed the bill last week, but it was not immediately signed by the president.
In a statement, Ryan called the proposal “absurd” and said he hopes the measure is still approved in a vote next week.
“The gun-grabbing bill we were told would stop violence was never even brought up in the Senate.
It’s an insult to all the good people in the country who have been killed by guns,” he said.