Two Republicans in Congress open door to banning 'bump stock' used by Las Vegas shooter
Senator John Cornyn speaking at the 2012 CPAC in Washington, D.C. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Two Texas Republicans in Congress – U.S. Sen. John Cornyn and U.S. Rep. Bill Flores of Bryan – expressed interest Wednesday in Congress exploring a federal ban on a type of gun attachment used by the gunman in the Las Vegas mass shooting.


U.S. Rep. Bill Flores, R-Bryan, of Texas said he supports a federal ban on "bump stocks," which Stephen Paddock used on rifles to have them shoot more like automatic firearms, The Hill reported Wednesday.

“Based on the videos I heard and saw, and now that I’ve studied up on what a bump stock is — I didn’t know there was such a thing — there’s no reason for it,” Flores told The Hill.

Cornyn stopped short of a full ban on bump stocks and said in a call with reporters that the device's role in the attack "bears looking into." Cornyn said he had spoke with U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, about holding a hearing into bump stocks and "any other aspect of this terrible crime that we need to look at from a federal perspective" once the initial investigation is complete.

Still, Cornyn reaffirmed his support for gun ownership by "law abiding citizens who have no criminal record and no mental impairment." He added that he would support passing a law that would "somehow" prevent a similar attack, but "given the fact that this man had no criminal record and was unknown to law enforcement previously and was willing to commit suicide rather than be apprehended, it's hard to figure out what kind of law we could pass."

"I don't think this should be politicized and viewed as an opportunity to try to limit the second amendment rights of law-abiding citizens," Cornyn said. "And unfortunately, that seems to be the first thing that happens."

Paddock killed more than 50 people and injure more than 500 Sunday in one of the worst mass shootings in recent U.S. history.

BY MATTHEW CHOI, THE TEXAS TRIBUNE