WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, addressed a group of media personnel on a conference call Wednesday afternoon about new legislation he is introducing to help keep Americans safe from ISIS and other terrorist threats.
The bill would provide grants to state and local law enforcement agencies for anti-terrorism programs and training for active shooter incidents, while bolstering community partnerships to combat homegrown extremism or the recruitment or radicalization of those living in the U.S.
“We need to insure the ones on the front line are prepared to root out home grown terrorists,” Brown said. “In the wake of last weeks shooting, Ohioans are very concerned about what could happen here.”
He said there is no way to know this for sure, but if the local police departments in San Bernardino would have had this kind of intelligence they may have been able to stop the recent shootings from happening. Brown stressed that they don’t know if this, or any of the other ways they are trying to combat homegrown terrorism will work effectively, but it’s about the big picture – they have to try. The problem is multifaceted, he said, but this bill will stop something.
Brown also outlined an additional provision that would restrict ISIS’s financing by imposing tough new sanctions on foreign financial institutions that knowingly facilitate financial transactions with ISIS. Finally, Brown called for closing the terrorist gun loophole to stop individuals who are known or suspected terrorists—including those on the “No Fly” list—from purchasing a firearm.
“I respect responsible gun ownership, but when are we going to say enough is enough,” Brown said. “If you are not allowed to fly, you should not be able to purchase an assault weapon.”
Brown said he didn’t think the republicans will have huge opposition to this bill, because stamping out terrorism is a non-partisan issue, but he does think they will have a hard time with the gun purchasing regulation part. He said, republicans will do whatever the gun manufacturers want.
He briefly discussed carrying guns in public and how he does not support some of the decisions Ohio lawmakers have made.
“The people who allow guns to be carried into a daycare, but not into the statehouse are lunatics,” Brown said.
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