Senate Democrats don't have the 60 votes needed to advance a bill to ban assault weapons, Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., told CNN's "State of the Union," but he expressed optimism that something could be achieved in the next Congress if Democrats manage to keep their Senate seat after the Georgia runoff.
"I'm glad that President Biden is going to be pushing us to take a vote on an assault weapons ban," Murphy said. "The House has already passed it. It's sitting in front of the Senate. Does it have 60 votes in the Senate right now? Probably not. But let's see if we can try to get that number as close to 60 as possible."
Murphy added: "If we don't have the votes, then we'll talk to [Senate Majority Leader Chuck] Schumer and maybe come back next year, with maybe an additional senator, and see if we can do better."
Congress returns this week to a packed schedule in the lame-duck session, which is centered mainly on the government funding bill, which has to be passed, as well as other priorities.
Biden on Thursday talked about the "scourge" of gun violence, saying that "the idea we still allow semi-automatic weapons to be purchased is sick. Just sick. I'm going to try to get rid of assault weapons," The Guardian reported.
Murphy told CNN that Biden is correct that "if you passed an assault weapons ban you would see less mass shootings in this country."
Murphy admitted that if even if an assault weapons ban is passed, "you are not going to magically eliminate mass-shootings," but he stressed that it is true that "an AR-15, or AR-15-style weapon, is generally the choice of mass shooters."
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