Sen. Grassley

U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa says he’s hopeful to hear of efforts to reach compromise on gun control legislation, especially if it includes his bill.

Republican Senator John Cornyn of Texas and Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut are scheduled to meet this week to establish a “framework” to find common ground on a response to recent mass shootings.

Grassley says he heard President Biden’s address Sunday, where he promised to do something about gun violence.

Grassley says, “When I heard him talking about what Cornyn and Murphy are the people that are leading this effort to get some sort of a compromise, I heard him not only talk about guns but school safety.”

Under his bill called the Eagles Act, Grassley says trained professionals would be tasked with working to identify and manage threats at the high school level before they occur. The bill would direct experts in child psychology to work closely with a federal threat assessment center to develop evidence-based techniques to identify potential threats.

“It builds on a program that was set up in 1998 for the Secret Service,” Grassley says. “It’s been very successful, to teach people how to observe people, and if you observe somebody that appears to be a threat to themselves or a threat to somebody else, that you would try to intervene.”

While some bills before Congress have long names that are summarized with an acronym, Grassley says the Eagles Act is different.

“Eagle is the mascot for the Parkland, Florida, school that a student murdered, I think, 13 kids,” Grassley says. “I’ve worked with the parents down there. In fact, within the last two weeks, one of the parents was in my office again, asking how they could help.”

Seventeen people were killed at the Parkland school, with 17 more injured. A 19-year-old former student was charged in the Valentine’s Day 2018 killings, which surpassed the Columbine High School massacre that killed 15, including the perpetrators, in Colorado in 1999.

A week ago, an 18-year-old fatally shot 19 students and two teachers, wounding 17 others, at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.