Extending plastic gun ban just first step?

by David Sherfinski-The Washington Times  |  published on December 3, 2013

Gun rights groups are rallying to try to stop any extension of a federal law to ban undetectable plastic guns, saying that if the House GOP passes something then Senate Democrats will turn it into a broader gun control push.

Congress is racing a Dec. 9 deadline when the existing ban expires. The House was slated to vote Monday night but put it off until Tuesday to accommodate bill sponsor Rep. Howard Coble, a North Carolina Republican whose flight back to the capital was canceled Monday.

Mr. Coble’s legislation would extend the existing ban, first enacted in 1988, which makes it illegal to manufacture, own, transport, buy, or sell any firearm that is not detectable by metal detector and/or does not present an accurate image when put through an X-ray machine.

But with the rise of 3-D printers, some lawmakers want to go further.

“The House bill is better than nothing, but it’s not good enough. We absolutely must close the loophole that allows anyone to legally make a gun that could be rendered invisible by the easy removal of its metal part,” said Sen. Charles E. Schumer, a New York Democrat who is leading the push to pass legislation in the Senate. “Under current law it is legal to make a plastic gun so long as it has some metal in it, even if it is easily removable. The bill we’ll try to pass in the Senate would fix that.”

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