Historic gun control bill passes Congress with Republican support

Washington DC – Congress officially passed the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act on Friday.

The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act passed Congress on Friday, and will now head to President Joe Biden's desk for signing.
The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act passed Congress on Friday, and will now head to President Joe Biden's desk for signing.  © Chip Somodevilla / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

After the Senate voted 65-33 in favor of the bill on Thursday night, it moved to the House where it passed in a 234-193 vote on Friday.

The bill cleared its first hurdle in a preliminary Senate vote on Tuesday with 14 Republicans backing the legislation.

Congress' approval of the bill marks an end to nearly three decades of inaction on legislation regarding gun control and gun violence in the US.

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Next, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act will head to President Joe Biden's desk, where he's expected to sign the bill into law.

"Our kids and our nation will be safer because of this legislation," Biden wrote on Twitter.

The legislation will enhance background checks for those looking to buy a gun under the age of 21. Authorities will now have the ability to examine juvenile records including mental health records starting at the age of 16.

The bill will also provide millions in grant funding for states in an effort to incentivize the enactment of red flag laws. Such laws enable law enforcement and other entities to petition the court to have guns removed from individuals deemed to be a threat to themselves or others.

Additionally, this legislation will provide roughly $15 million in federal funding for mental health programs and security upgrades to schools.

Cover photo: Chip Somodevilla / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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