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Senate gun bill moving closer to final vote as senators continue debate

The new bill would expand background checks for young adults, closes the 'boyfriend loophole', and provides funding for school security and mental health resources.

HOUSTON — United States senators continue to debate a bipartisan gun violence bill Thursday night after the Senate voted to halt a filibuster.

Those in favor of the bill hope to have a final vote before this weekend.

Editor's note: The above video is from related coverage on the gun control debate.

If passed, the bill would be what many call the most significant piece of federal gun legislation in decades.

Here are some of the key points of the bill:

  • Provides $ 750 million for “red flag” programs, mental health courts, drug courts and veteran’s courts.
  • Closes what is called the “boyfriend loophole” – barring anyone convicted of domestic violence against from having a gun.
  • Enhanced background checks for gun buyers under 21, including a search of their juvenile criminal records and mental health records.
  • Provides billions of dollars in funding for school mental health programs and security.

RELATED: Gun bill on road to passage as Senate overcomes GOP delays

Meanwhile, in New York, gun owners have had to show a “special need” to get a permit that allowed them to carry guns in public. But not anymore after a Supreme Court ruling on Thursday.

“The lawful and legal gun owner of New York state is no longer going to be persecuted by laws that have nothing to do with the safety of the people,” said Tom King, president of New York State Rifle and Pistol Association.

In the Supreme Court’s 6-3 opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote, “The Second and 14th Amendments protect an individual's right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home."

RELATED: Supreme Court strikes New York gun law in major 2nd Amendment ruling

“Shocking,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul. “Absolutely shocking.”

New York officials are among those upset with the ruling.

“We cannot allow New York to become the wild, wild west,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

The ruling is expected to impact similar laws in several states, including California and Massachusetts.

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