POLITICS
04/09/2013 11:48 am ET

Harry Reid Cites Father's Suicide In Gun Control Plea (VIDEO)

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) took to the Senate floor on Tuesday to urge his colleagues to vote on gun control legislation, citing his own father's suicide while making the case for tougher gun laws.

"In Nevada, if you purchase a handgun you have to wait three days to pick it up," Reid said, referencing a bill he authored as a state lawmaker. "And it's believed that alone has saved the lives of many people. Sometimes people in a fit of passion will purchase a handgun to do bad things with it, Mr. President, even as my dad did, killed himself. Waiting a few days helps."

Reid's father committed suicide in 1972.

On Monday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced his plans to join some of his Republican colleagues in filibustering the gun control package Reid is attempting to bring to a vote. McConnell is the 14th Republican to join the effort, which was first announced by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.)

While the filibuster has gained steam, some Republicans are urging the senators to drop the plan.

"Let this come to a debate," Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) said on CNN Tuesday. "Even if it doesn't go down the way I want it to, I think the American people are entitled to a debate. To me, to use Senate rules to block a debate on an issue of this importance is just wrong."

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) had a similar message for his colleagues on Sunday.

"I don’t understand it. The purpose of the United States Senate is to debate and to vote and to let the people know where we stand," McCain said on CBS' "Face The Nation." "What are we afraid of?"

During his Tuesday speech, Reid pressed the Republicans to break their filibuster promise.

"I hope Republicans will stop trying to shut down debate," he said.

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