House passes ‘STOP School Violence Act’ backed by pro-gun groups
By Daniel Terrill
Rep. John Rutherford (R-FL) introduced STOP School Violence Act of 2018, which passed 407-10 in the House on March 16, 2018. (Photo: Rep. Rutherford’s Office)
A measure — supported by two leading gun rights groups — to appropriate some $50 million per year for school safety systems passed with overwhelming support in the House last week.
Ninety-five percent of Congressmen voted Friday to advance the Student, Teachers, And Officers Preventing School Violence Act, legislation that would provide grants to help schools develop threat assessment and reporting systems as well as the tools and staff to operate them.
National Rifle Association head lobbyist Chris Cox said the measure “will help stop school violence before it happens” by giving tools to identify dangerous individuals and intervene.
The gun industry’s trade association, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, also praised the bill’s passage. NSSF’s senior vice president and general counsel Lawrence Keanse said the organization will continue to press lawmakers to pass measures that “bolster school security and respect Constitutional rights.”
Rep. John Rutherford, a Florida Republican, filed the bill in January, but the measure gained traction following the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead and 15 others injured.
Rutherford said the bill would bolster “several