Cornyn Proposes NRA-Backed Bill Bolstering Programs For Treating People With Mental Illness

The AP (8/6, Fram) reports that yesterday, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) “proposed a National Rifle Association-backed bill…that he said would make the federal background check system for gun buyers more effective and bolster programs for treating people with mental illness.” Under the proposed legislation, state and local government would be given “more flexibility to use federal funds to screen for prisoners’ mental problems and improve training for law enforcement officers and others on handling emergencies involving” people with mental illnesses. In addition, the measure “would let civil judges order outpatient treatment for people with mental problems short of committing them to institutions.”

National Journal (8/6, Owens, Subscription Publication) points out that currently, there are “several mental-health-reform measures vying for attention.” Sen. Cornyn’s measure “has joined a comprehensive reform bill from GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy and Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy, and a narrower Senate bill from GOP Sen. Lamar Alexander and Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, as well as Republican Rep. Tim Murphy’s reform bill in the House.” According to National Journal, “It seems that mental-health reform is a uniting topic, one that might actually create momentum in a slow-moving Congress.”

Related Links:

— “LEADING GOP SENATOR OFFERS BILL ON GUNS, MENTAL HEALTH,” Alan Fram, Associated Press, August 5, 2015.

Posted in In The News.