By TARINI PARTI | 4/18/13 3:48 PM EDT
President Barack Obama and Democrats have decided to “hit a pause and freeze” on gun control legislation, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday afternoon.
Reid officially pulled gun legislation from the floor, but pledged to bring the Manchin-Toomey agreement to expand background checks, which was defeated in the Senate Wednesday, back to the floor for a vote.
“I’ve spoken with the president. He and I agree that the best way to keep working towards passing a background check bill is to hit a pause and freeze the background check bill where it
He said that would give gun control advocates more time to lobby Republican senators who voted against the legislation.
“It is only a matter of time… The stand of the Republicans is not sustainable,” Reid said. “It is a question of how long they’re going to stand firm, but it is not sustainable. I assure the 90 percent of Americans who support meaningful background checks. I’m going to continue this fight.”
The Manchin-Toomey legislation failed in the Senate by a 54-46 vote.
Only four Republicans broke rank to vote in favor of the legislation, and red-state Democrats up for reelection in 2014, including Sens. Max Baucus of Montana, Mark Begich of Alaska and Mark Pryor of Arkansas, voted against it.
Reid switched his vote to “no” at the last minute, allowing him under Senate rules to bring up the measure again.