Momentum builds for legislation regulating bump stocks

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WOODBURY -

House Speaker Paul Ryan became the highest-ranking Republican to openly say Congress should consider a possible ban on bump stocks, which enabled the Las Vegas mass killer to fire semi-automatic assault rifles as rapidly as machine guns.

Bump stocks, which are gun attachments that essentially turn a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic one, circumvent federal laws that strictly regulate firearms that can fire a burst of bullets with a single pull of the trigger.

Cliff Pgleger, of Long Island Gun Source, demonstrated for News 12 Long Island how bump stocks work. 

"It makes you fire it faster. The gun itself can still only be one round per pull but it makes you pull the trigger twice as fast," says Pgleger. 

Federal authorities say the shooter in Las Vegas had outfitted 12 firearms with bump stocks, allowing him to fire into the crowd of 22,000 people at a faster rate. Fifty eight people were killed, hundreds more were wounded.

Momentum for a ban on bump stocks is building. Supporters include some Republicans, in a departure from the GOP's general opposition to gun regulations of any kind.
Democratic Reps. Kathleen Rice and Tom Suozzi have co-sponsored bills banning bump stocks. 

Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin's office issued a statement to News 12 Long Island about the push for a bump stock ban. It reads in part, "There is no new bill yet, so at this point, there is no legislation to review."

"I think these bump stocks should be banned, I don't see any reason or legitimate purpose for them. Rather than get involved in a long debate, we should take quick action and show that Congress is responsive," Republican Rep. Peter King said in a statement. He's a co-sponsor of Florida Rep. Carlos Curbelo's legislation that bans bump stocks.

The White House says it is willing to discuss the idea.

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