[WASHINGTON, DC] – Today, U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, announced they are working together on bipartisan legislation to help prevent individuals who are in crisis from accessing deadly weapons.
Blumenthal and Graham intend to introduce legislation providing for the expanded use of extreme risk protection orders – also known as “red flag” orders.
- The “red flag” process allows law enforcement and family members to petition a court to temporarily restrict access to firearms by individuals deemed to pose an imminent threat to themselves or others.
- The removal of firearms would be temporary and the affected individual will be afforded due process protections to ensure their Constitutional rights are protected.
Indiana, Connecticut, and several other states currently have “red flag” laws on the books that allow law enforcement and family members to petition a judge to temporarily restrict an individual’s access to guns.
“When law enforcement has solid evidence that someone is in crisis — intensely and imminently a danger — there should be a process for protecting them and the public from the guns they possess or buy. The absence of any federal process to remove guns from such immediately dangerous individuals can have deadly consequences. Senator Graham and I are working on bipartisan legislation to prevent tragedies from occurring by giving law enforcement the tools they need to keep guns out of dangerous hands,” Blumenthal said.
“I spoke with Vice President Pence about Indiana’s ‘Red Flag’ provision earlier this week,” said Graham. “It seeks to balance the Second Amendment rights of the individual with concerns from law enforcement and family members about those who may be experiencing a mental health crisis. Senator Blumenthal and I disagree on many issues regarding the Second Amendment, but we strongly agree that restricting access to firearms from those who pose an imminent danger to themselves or others is a strong step forward in protecting public safety. Our government encourages our citizens that if you see something, say something. We also need ‘do something.’ Our goal is to have a system where we can get results which protect lives.”
Blumenthal and Graham plan to introduce the legislation next week in the Senate.