Sen. Chuck Schumer on Sunday called for a vote on gun control within a month.
Standing with several children and their parents in Columbus Circle a day after thousands participated in the March for Our Lives rally, Schumer said he wants a vote on three measures. They include closing loopholes in federal background checks, creating a system to issue protective orders against potentially dangerous individuals and banning assault weapons.
“There’s a new feeling in the air, in the streets,” Schumer said. “Our Republican friends, who have just done whatever the NRA has wanted, are smelling the change in the air. They are so worried about the elections of 2018. And when they see a mass movement like this sprung up not from the top down, but from the bottom up, enabled by social media and other things that didn’t exist 10 or 15 years ago — they really get worried about their futures.”
Schumer said he brought up gun control during budget negotiations, but did not “push as hard as we might have then” because he believed Saturday’s rally might build support for such measures.
Schumer said he told Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan gun control is a priority.
And he said President Donald Trump “ought to have the courage to come out for universal background checks.”
On March 23, Trump tweeted that the U.S. Department of Justice would issue a rule banning bump stocks — a device that can turn a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon.
Schumer described this proposal as a “necessary, but hardly sufficient” step.
Young constituents agreed that further gun control measures are needed.
Financial District resident, Christian Fourmaux, 11, jumped at the opportunity to get in front of the mic and have his voice heard.
“I feel disgusted that our country is full of this problem and that the people who agree with us . . . need to join us in this fight,” Fourmaux said.
Kannon Peters, 9, of the Upper West Side, said, “This thing just needs to stop.”
Their push came a day after thousands took to the streets in New York, Washington D.C., and cities across the globe. The march, which closed down busy midtown streets, was organized weeks after 17 people were killed in a school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and drew politicians, celebrities, parents and kids alike.