U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) was one of just two Democrats to vote against a gun control package that would raise the minimum age to buy most semi-automatic weapons to 21, bucking his party once again.
Last month, Schrader, 70, lost his primary bid for an eighth term to Jamie McLeod-Skinner, a progressive who hammered Schrader for voting against the priorities of his party.
He voted against COVID stimulus checks because he wanted more means testing. He held up Biden’s infrastructure package because he didn’t want to let Medicare negotiate prescription drug prices. On a conference call with Democratic leadership, he complained that the second impeachment of President Donald Trump would be “a lynching.”
Today, he kept up his contrarian ways by voting against the gun package. Only Rep. Jared Golden, a Democrat from Maine, joined his “no” vote. Five Republicans broke with their party to vote yes on the bill. The final vote was 223 to 204. The measure heads to Senate, where it is almost certain to fail.
The vote came after painful testimony from witnesses to gun violence, including Miah Cerrillo, a fourth grader who survived the mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas, on May 24. Cerrillo said she didn’t feel safe at school “because she didn’t want it to happen again.”
Kimberly Rubio, whose daughter Lexi died at Uvalde, testified to demand action. “We seek a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines,” Rubio said. “We understand that for some reason, to some people, to people with money, to people who fund political campaigns, that guns are more important than children.”
Schrader spokesman Kevin Porter didn’t immediately return an email seeking comment.
In addition to raising the age for purchasing assault rifles, the bill would ban large capacity magazines like the ones that Salvador Ramos, the murderer in Uvalde, brought into the elementary school there. It would also regulate bump stocks and ghost guns.