February 12, 2019

Cortez Masto Cosponsors Bill to Ban High-Capacity Gun Magazines

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today joined Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) in introducing the Keep Americans Safe Act, common sense public safety legislation that would ban the importation, sale, manufacture, transfer, or possession of gun magazines that hold more than ten rounds of ammunition.

“On 1October, 58 families were forever changed by senseless gun violence in America. They joined what one mother who lost a child at Sandy Hook has called an ‘expanding congregation of grief.’ Too many families across the country know the pain of losing a loved one to gun violence, and we owe it to those families to take common sense steps to address gun violence and keep Americans safe,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “I’m proud to join Senator Menendez in introducing this bill that would save lives and enhance law enforcement’s ability to intervene when tragedy strikes. I’ll continue fighting for common sense gun safety legislation that keeps our communities safe and saves lives.”

“Today we stand with Parkland, with Newtown, with Orlando and with countless communities across America that have been torn apart by horrific gun violence to say that weapons of war have no place on our streets and high capacity magazines have no place on our shelves,” said Senator Menendez. “The Keep Americans Safe Act would finally limit the sale of large capacity magazines that are not designed for hunting or self-defense but instead for killing as many people as possible without having to stop and reload. Inaction on gun violence is not an option and anyone who refuses to address a real emergency like this one is complicit in the carnage. Together we must continue fighting for the day when we can truly say ‘never again’.”


In addition to prohibiting large-capacity ammunition magazines, the Keep Americans Safe Act includes the following provisions:

  • Provides limited exceptions for devices possessed before enactment, for certain current and former law enforcement personnel, for certain Atomic Energy personnel, for tubular devices that can only accept .22 rimfire ammunition, and for certain authorized testing or experimentation;
  • Modifies the high-capacity definition to prevent coupled or joined magazines;
  • Authorizes a buyback programs for high capacity magazines using Byrne JAG grants;
  • Requires devices manufactured after enactment to have conspicuous serial numbers and date of manufacture to help law enforcement identify restricted magazines;
  • Harmonizes forfeiture provisions for magazines with current law; currently FBI and ATF can seize and destroy certain firearms but not high capacity magazines.

Full text of the bill is available here.