WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday that gun control legislation remains elusive even after the mass shooting a day earlier at the Navy Yard just a mile away from the U.S. Capitol.
“We don’t have the votes. I’d like to get them, but we don’t have them now,” Reid told reporters.
The Senate failed in April to advance legislation that Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., had proposed as a bipartisan compromise on gun control measures sought in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in December.
Their proposal, which would have expanded background checks for firearms sold over the Internet and at gun shows, fell five votes shy of the 60 needed to overcome a procedural hurdle.
A lone gunman killed a dozen people on Monday morning at the Naval Sea Systems Command headquarters at the Washington Navy Yard. It was the deadliest attack at a military facility in the United fort States since the 2009 Fort Hood rampage in Texas.
Reid said that he has continued to try to round up support for gun control measures with no success in the Senate.
The Senate held a moment of silence earlier in the day for the victims of the shooting.
“No words of condolence could possibly ease the pain of a dozen families who lost loved ones in yesterday’s Navy Yard shooting rampage. But I hope it is some small comfort that a city and a nation mourn alongside them,” Reid said on the Senate floor.
Contact Stephens Washington Bureau reporter Peter Urban at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-783-1760.