Ban on "bump stocks" fails in Illinois House

In this Oct. 4, 2017, photo, a device called a "bump stock" is attached to a semi-automatic rifle at the Gun Vault store and shooting range in South Jordan, Utah. 

AP

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Lawmakers in the Illinois House of Representatives soundly rejected a ban on gun modifications known as "bump stocks" that increase the rate of fire for semiautomatic weapons.

Nationwide calls for a ban on the devices arose following the Las Vegas massacre

The measure, sponsored by Rep. Martin Moylan, a Democrat from Des Plaines, Illinois, failed in a vote of 48-54 on Thursday. Moylan had argued the ban would save lives, but Democrats as well as Republicans complained the bill was too broad. 

Bump stocks were found on a dozen guns in the hotel room from which the Las Vegas shooter gunned down 58 at an outdoor concert Oct. 1 before killing himself.   

Bump stocks don't alter the trigger. They rely on inertia from the recoil to allow quicker trigger suppression. 

But Moylan's measure would have nixed any trigger modification that allows faster firing. That troubled gun advocates, Republican and Democrat alike. 

Republican state Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer of Jacksonville said modify triggers to get an edge in competitive shooting is routine. He said Moylan's measure would mean "turning law-abiding citizens into criminals. Things they currently have are going to be illegal."