These Five Republicans Voted for 'Protecting Our Kids' Gun Controls

Five Republican members of the House of Representatives voted in favor of a package of measures designed to tackle gun violence in the U.S. on Wednesday in the wake of deadly mass shootings.

The Protecting Our Kids Act passed the House by a vote of 223 to 204, with two Democrats joining most Republicans in opposing the final package that will now be sent to the Senate.

The five Republicans who voted in favor of the package were Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, Chris Jacobs of New York, Adam Kinzinger of Illinois and Fred Upton of Michigan.

Democrats Jared Golden of Maine and Kurt Schrader of Oregon voted against the Protect Our Kids Act.

The bill contains seven measures aimed at reducing gun violence and the House voted on each measure separately largely along party line votes, before approving the whole package for advancement to the Senate.

Those provisions include raising the minimum age a person can buy a semi-automatic weapon from 18 to 21 and prohibiting civilians from using magazines with more than 15 rounds.

The bill would also create new federal offenses for gun trafficking and the so-called straw purchase of guns. This is when someone who can't pass a background check purchases a firearm through a proxy.

Fitzpatrick issued a statement after his vote, saying: "I am a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and all of the protections that it entails. I also believe that we have no higher responsibility as leaders, no higher responsibility as human beings, than to protect our children and to keep our community safe."

"These are not and must not be mutually exclusive concepts," he said.

The bill comes after recent deadly mass shootings at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas and a hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi urged passage of the legislation on Wednesday and appeared to take aim at Republicans opposed to gun control measures.

"When a moment of silence is 'good enough' because you don't have the courage to take a vote to protect the children, I would say: your political survival is totally insignificant to the survival of our—compared to the survival of our children," Pelosi said.

Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio, who is the ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, spoke in opposition to the legislation on Wednesday and accused Democrats of wanting to destroy the Second Amendment.

"What happened in Uvalde, Buffalo, Tulsa is as wrong as wrong could be, and our hearts go out to those communities and those families who have been impacted in such a terrible way," Jordan said.

"But the answer is not to destroy the Second Amendment. But that is exactly where the Democrats want to go," he said.

The legislation now heads to the evenly divided Senate where a bipartisan group of senators has been negotiating possible new measures. However, support from 10 Republicans would be needed to break the filibuster and pass the Protect Our Kids Act into law.

Pelosi said on Wednesday that "we are prayerful" about the Senate negotiations.

Activists Rally Outside the Capitol
Activists rally against gun violence outside the U.S. Capitol on June 6, 2022 in Washington, DC. Five Republican members of the House of Representatives voted in favor of a new gun control package on Wednesday. Drew Angerer/Getty Images