Amid pressure from Democrats to pass gun control legislation, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) wants to make sure Congress passes a bill that “actually works.”
Following the two back-to-back shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, that killed 31 people in total, Democratic Congressmembers have urged their Senate Republican colleagues to bring Congress back from August recess to bring about a vote on gun control legislation that already has the approval of the House.
Democrats have sought to pressure Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) into bringing up the legislation. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said during a news conference on Tuesday, “The House has acted, and it is time — past time — for the [Senate] to act.”
Additionally, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has called on McConnell to do so as well, even bringing up that the Republican leader describes himself as the “Grim Reaper” for blocking House-approved legislation in the Senate.
During a “Special Report with Bret Baier” interview late Wednesday, McCarthy addressed Democrats’ push for gun control action.
Asked what he believes the Senate should do in regards to legislation that passed in the House regarding background checks, the Republican leader said:
“I think the Senate should actually pass a bill that actually works. You’ve got to understand what has this last Congress done? When we saw a shooting like in Parkland where that individual — and we never want to say his name — the FBI was warned not once, but twice, months ahead of time, and no action was taken. We saw that shooting in Texas at a church. What happened there was the national instant criminal background check failed. It was our own military that no longer gave me information forward so we change that. […] When you look at the bump stocks that came through during the Obama Administration, the Trump Administration took that back.”
“We would actually like to see something that works,” the Republican lawmaker said, adding that Republicans are willing to work with Democrats to protect due process as well as to protect Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens.
While McCarthy voted against the House-passed bill on background checks because it “does not give you meaningful background checks,” he reiterated that he’s willing to work with others to make a bill that does. He added that he’s spoken to the president and McConnell and “we want a process that works.”
Watch McCarthy’s interview below:
It’s unlikely though that the pressure by congressional Democrats is enough for McConnell to call the Senate back from the August recess, as he recently said there would be “bipartisan discussions” on gun control once they return.
“We’re going to have these bipartisan discussions and when we get back (from the recess), hopefully, be able to come together and actually pass something,” McConnell said. “I want to make a law and not just see this kind of political sparring going on.”