Schumer blocks bipartisan school safety bill in Senate after fatal shooting

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.) blocked a Republican-sponsored but bipartisan-backed school safety bill hours after he chastised the GOP for allegedly doing nothing to prevent gun violence in schools .

After Tuesday’s deadly shooting in Uvalde, Texas, in which 19 children and two adults were gruesomely murdered by a deranged gunman, Democrats have clamored for new gun control laws and accused Republicans of complicity in child murders by inaction . But when Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin introduced a school safety bill Wednesday afternoon, Schumer blocked it.

“GOP Senator Johnson was just trying to get a bill that could see more guns in schools — I blocked it,” Schumer said boasted on twitter. “The truth: There were officers at the school in Texas. The shooter got past them. We need real solutions.”

The Democratic leader was referring to reports that a school police officer from Robb Elementary School shot with the shooter but was unable to prevent him from entering the building and massacring an entire 4th grade classroom. Fox News’ Bill Melugin reported that the school official and three local police officers were injured in the shooting before a Border Patrol agent could kill the gunman.

However, the School Safety Act blocked by Schumer was not a law that “would see more guns in schools,” as the Democratic leader claimed.

Johnson had asked for unanimous approval Pass the Luke and Alex School Safety Act – a bill that would codify the Federal Clearinghouse on School Safety into law. The clearing house can currently be reached at and provides parents and educators with best practice information and recommendations to “prevent, protect, mitigate, respond to, and recover from a range of safety threats, hazards and emergency situations in the school”.

The site is maintained by the US Department of Homeland Security in partnership with the Departments of Education, Justice and Health and Human Services. Johnson’s bill would create a codified structure for the Clearinghouse to become a permanent primary resource operated by the federal government to provide state and local school administrators with best practices and recommendations for school safety. The bill would require state and local governments to be notified of the availability of this resource to schools.

The Luke and Alex School Safety Act is named for Luke Hoyer and Alex Schachter, two students killed in the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Lawmakers in both parties have previously backed the bill, which passed unanimously in committee twice.

“There is nothing partisan about this bill at all. It’s just a good idea that could save lives,” Johnson said in a remark after reinstating the bill. “It was such a good idea that under the previous government they set up this clearinghouse. It’s set up and working. So everything this bill does at this point serves as a model for what is happening. All this bill is doing now is codifying to ensure that this clearinghouse will stand the test of time – that it will always be there to provide school safety best practices. Schumer blocks bipartisan school safety bill in Senate after fatal shooting

Laura Coffey

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