by Rio Lacanlale, Reno Gazette Journal, July 29, 2022
Nevada’s House delegation, which represents the state where the deadliest mass shooting in modern America occurred in 2017, voted along party lines Friday on a semi-automatic weapons ban that narrowly passed Congress.
Friday’s vote marks the first of its kind since Congress allowed a 1994 ban on the high-powered firearm to expire a decade later.
The bill would make it illegal to import, sell or manufacture a long list of semi-automatic weapons, including some of the legally modified rifles used in the Las Vegas Strip shooting on Oct. 1, 2017, that left 60 people dead and hundreds more injured.
Listed in alphabetical order, here’s how Nevada’s delegation voted on the measure and what they had to say about their vote:
Rep. Mark Amodei, R-Nev.
Nevada’s lone Republican congressman voted against the legislation, calling the bill disrespectful in a statement released Friday evening.
In the statement, he criticized the legislation for labeling “many of America’s most common guns as so-called ‘assault weapons,'” including “AK and AR style weapons,” Amodei said, “of which there are millions already in circulation.”
Amodei, who represents Northern Nevada’s only congressional district, also said he won’t support the ban “just because less than 0.0007% of the population decides to engage in criminal activities.”
His office did not immediately respond Friday evening to a request for further clarification on that statistic — including Amodei’s source and on what values the percentage was calculated.
Rep. Steven Horsford, D-Nev.
“We must protect our communities, we must save our children, and we must stem the violence that has become far too common for so many Americans,” Horsford said in a statement Friday after voting in favor of the measure.
In the statement, he highlighted that the Las Vegas shooting was perpetrated by “an assailant with multiple assault weapons.”
More than half of the 24 firearms recovered after the attack from the gunman’s hotel room on the Strip were semi-automatic rifles legally modified to fire like automatic weapons.
Perched in a 32nd-floor suite, the gunman opened fire into a crowd across the street at a country music festival, unleashing about 1,100 rounds in 10 minutes.
Rep. Susie Lee, D-Nev.
Lee voted in support of the weapons ban, she said on social media, “to keep our children safe and protect our communities.”
“Weapons of war don’t belong on our streets—but the majority of Republicans disagree,” Lee wrote. “They would rather offer thoughts and prayers than take action against gun violence.”
Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev.
On social media, Titus said she voted to pass the ban because “assault weapons are designed to inflict maximum damage.”
“A bullet fired by one can tear softball-sized wounds into victims,” she added. “AND they can fire up to 60 rounds per minute. We need to get them off our streets & out of our communities.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Rio Lacanlale is the Las Vegas correspondent for the Reno Gazette Journal and the USA Today Network. Contact her at [email protected] or on Twitter @riolacanlale. Support local journalism by subscribing to the RGJ today.