Texas church shooting prompts talk of new law


WASHINGTON, D.C – This year, congress passed a 90-million dollar bill that would help protect places of worship from attacks.

Michigan Democratic Senator Gary Peters says the money is critical, especially after the recent attacks this past weekend at a North Texas church, and a New York synagogue.

NewsChannel 34’s Anna Wiernicki is in Washington with more.

It only lasted six seconds.

From the moment a gunman opened fire inside the west freeway Church of Christ in North Texas, to when a member of the congregation pulled out his own gun and killed the shooter…

Ken Paxton: I think you could see from the video that that guy was surrounded rather quickly by more than just, you know, a few people.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says the church was ready, they had designated a security team and trained members of the congregation.

Ken Paxton: I think they are the model for other churches and businesses and what they need to focus on.

Gary Peters: It’s incomprehensible to think that’s where we are in this country

But Michigan Democratic Senator Gary Peters says that is the reality for many places of worship.

Gary Peters: Individuals that are very concerned that when they gather to worship they could be a target.

Peters cosponsored a bill with Ohio Republican Rob Portman that would increase 90 million dollars, a fund to help churches, synagogues and other places of worship protect themselves from attacks.

Peters says the money would allow the department of homeland security to work with the religious groups to assess their risks and plan for the worst.

Gary Peters: These grants are available now and places of worship should reach out to see if they qualify.

But some, like former NY City Mayor and Presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg, aren’t sure good guys with guns are a good idea.

Michael Bloomberg: It turned out okay, but that does not make this a that is sensible.

Peters’ bill has been passed by both the House and Senate and is awaiting the President’s signature to become law.

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