WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Katherine Clark (MA-5) voted today to pass the Assault Weapons Ban of 2022, legislation to save lives by prohibiting the future sale of deadly semi-automatic weapons. 208 Republicans voted against the bill.

“Assault weapons are designed to destroy human life quickly and efficiently on the battlefield – but instead, these guns are waging war in our streets and schools,” said Assistant Speaker Clark. “Today, House Democrats took a major step forward to increase public safety by reinstating the ban on assault weapons. This bill will save lives.”

According to Giffords Law Center, a growing body of research demonstrates that banning assault weapons can help to prevent gun violence:

  • During the ten years the federal assault weapons ban was in effect, mass shooting fatalities were 70% less likely to occur compared to the periods before and after the ban.
  • An analysis of public mass shootings resulting in four or more deaths found that more than 85% of such fatalities were caused by assault rifles.
  • Eight of the ten deadliest mass shootings in recent American history have involved an assault weapon that would have previously been banned.
    • In six of those shootings, the shooters were able to purchase the assault weapons from a licensed dealer legally – in some cases weeks—before the shooting.

Last month, Clark voted to pass the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. This new law is already working to strengthen protections for our children, families, and communities from the scourge of gun violence. She also voted in support of the Protecting Our Kids Act, a package of bills that would raise the legal age to purchase semi-automatic weapons, crack down on gun trafficking, establish safety requirements for residential storage of firearms, regulate ghost guns, ban bump stocks and high-capacity magazines, and other vital lifesaving steps.