Sen. Lindsey Graham just announced he is working on a bipartisan “red flag” gun confiscation bill, answering President Trump’s call for action.
“I have reached an agreement with Senator Blumenthal to create a federal grant program to assist and encourage states to adopt ‘Red Flag’ Protection Order laws to timely intervene in situations where there is an imminent threat of violence,” Graham said in a Senate Judiciary Committee statement on Monday.
“These grants will be given to law enforcement so they can hire and consult with mental health professionals to better determine which cases need to be acted upon. This grant program also requires robust due process and judicial review. It does allow for quick action,” Graham explained.
“I will introduce this legislation in the very near future with Senator Blumenthal and hope that my Republican and Democratic colleagues will join us to finally move forward in the effort to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people,” he added.
Graham noted that he’s already discussed his idea with Trump this morning and received the President’s support.
Graham’s remarks came just hours after Trump delivered remarks during which he called for red flag gun laws, along with improvements in identifying potentially violent people, combating a culture of violence, reforming mental health laws, and applying the death penalty to mass murder and hate crimes.
“We must make sure that those judged to pose a grave risk to public safety do not have access to firearms, and that if they do, those firearms can be taken through rapid due process,” Trump explained during his remarks on Monday. “That’s why I have called for ‘red flag laws’ also known as extreme risk protection orders.”
“Mental illness and hatred pulls the trigger, not the gun,” he added.
Earlier on Monday, Trump called for stronger background checks in a series of tweets.
….this legislation with desperately needed immigration reform. We must have something good, if not GREAT, come out of these two tragic events!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 5, 2019
Graham himself called for gun legislation Saturday night following the mass shooting at an El Paso shopping center that initially killed 20 — now 22.
“Time to do more than pray. Time to enact common-sense legislation in Congress to empower states to deal with those who present a danger to themselves and others — while respecting robust due process,” he tweeted.
“May not have mattered here, but Red Flag laws have proven to be effective in states that have them,” he added.
May not have mattered here, but Red Flag laws have proven to be effective in states that have them. (2/2)
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) August 4, 2019
Graham has been an advocate for “red flag” legislation and held a hearing on such laws in March when he proposed “incentivizing states to create their own red flag laws – which would be unique to their states,” according to his statement at the time.