Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) told reporters Monday that he supports raising the age for buying semi-automatic rifles and is open to an assault weapons ban.
Contrary to popular opinion, the AR in AR-15 stands for ArmaLite Rifle, not “assault rifle.”
It is a semi-automatic firearm.
The Hill has more on Manchin’s stance:
Speaking to CNN’s Manu Raju, Manchin said he supports raising the purchase age for such weapons following the elementary school massacre in Uvalde, Texas, carried out by an 18-year-old suspect who legally purchased two rifles.
“We know we can do something that would have prevented this. Raising the age, making sure that the age at least gives us a chance to work with that person, see and evaluate if they have a little maturity to them,” Manchin said Monday.
Manchin added he’s “open to doing something that makes sense” regarding age-based restrictions, adding he believes raising the minimum age to purchase semi-automatic weapons could potentially curb gun violence.
Manchin further added that while he enjoys shooting, he doesn’t see why anyone needs an AR-15.
A bipartisan group of senators has been discussing a range of measures recently, including expanded background checks, following the shooting in Uvalde and other mass shootings.