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Guns becomes hotter topic for Toomey in Senate race

MARC LEVY
  • Toomey was one of two Republican senators to support a filibuster on gun legislation.
  • His bill would create a new list of suspected terrorists barred from buying weapons.

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania’s U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey says he’s backing legislation to try to prevent a potential terrorist from buying a gun.

Senate Republican candidate Pat Toomey  (Photo by Jeff Fusco/Getty Images)

The bill was introduced Thursday, just days after the mass shooting in Orlando.

Toomey, a Republican, is in the midst of his first re-election campaign. He was one of two Republican senators to support a filibuster by Sen. Christopher Murray, D-Conn., that lasted more than 14 hours and ended after 2 a.m. on Thursday with a commitment to bring votes to the floor on gun control legislation.

Toomey says his bill is an attempt at a compromise between two dueling pieces of legislation to stop suspected terrorists from buying weapons. Both failed months ago.

He says it would direct the attorney general to create a new list of suspected terrorists who could be barred from buying weapons. Democrats are already rejecting the idea, saying it would create too much of a backlog.

The campaign of Toomey’s Democratic challenger, Katie McGinty, says Toomey’s trying to give himself political cover and that his bill would do little to actually prevent shootings.