U.S. House set to vote on bills to expand gun background checks

The U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote on Wednesday on a pair of bills to expand background checks before gun purchases, two years after a similar House effort failed to make it through the Senate.

The House Rules Committee on Monday will take up the two bills that Democrats, who control the chamber, say are aimed at closing loopholes in the background check system.

The Rules Committee action is a procedural step before the full House votes. A congressional aide said the chamber was poised to vote on the bills on Wednesday.

The House passed two bills in 2019 to expand background checks but they were never taken up by the then-Republican-controlled Senate. Nearly all legislation in the 100-member Senate requires 60 votes and the prospects of overcoming that hurdle are uphill at best in the evenly divided chamber.

The issue of gun rights is contentious in the United States, where numerous mass shootings in recent decades prompted calls from many Americans for stricter regulation of firearms and ammunition.

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Ogbonna Ugorji

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