Democrats want summer session to take up gun measures


HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Some lawmakers are asking Gov. Tom Wolf to convene a special session of the House and Senate in order to address gun violence.

Democratic House members made the request Wednesday. Lawmakers are currently in summer recess.

Democrats say there is legislation pending in both chambers, including bills to ban assault-style weapons, close the loophole for gun background checks, and adopt extreme risk protective orders.

“The continuous lack of action and the thoughts and prayers mentality must be a thing of the past,” said Rep. Kevin Boyle (D-Philadelphia/Montgomery). “We can no longer stand idly by and watch communities and families being torn apart by these senseless acts of violence. The time to act on commonsense gun reform in Pennsylvania must be now.”

The governor is open to calling on a special session but wants to make sure bills get a vote.

“The governor is open to calling a special session if there are commitments to allow votes on critical reforms that will save lives,” Wolf spokesman J.J. Abbott said. “Without such an agreement, there is no guarantee of action.”

“We will continue to carefully examine what is causing these tragedies within our society and how we are addressing the most dangerous and mentally ill members of our communities,” House Republican spokesman Mike Straub. “Whether in a special or regular session, our members are working to find an answer to ending horrific acts of violence while recognizing there are millions upon millions of Pennsylvanians who responsibly and legally own firearms.”

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