Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, asked his Republican colleagues to refrain from commenting publicly on potential new gun legislation while negotiations continue with Democrats, it was reported Friday.
The Hill reported that senators had finished work and left Washington, D.C., for the weekend without reaching a deal on gun legislation.
Democrats said they were "very close" to an agreement with Cornyn, the lead GOP negotiator, but staffers still needed to hammer out differences over language, Senate negotiators told The Hill.
Cornyn on Thursday said the group had hoped to release a joint statement by week’s end.
"We were hopeful there might be something we could do today but we have this remaining issue we need to resolve," Cornyn said, The Hill reported.
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who has been pressured by progressives to force a Senate vote on gun control legislation if Republicans don’t agree soon to a compromise bill, had said he wanted an agreement by week's end.
Cornyn wants fellow Republican senators to remain silent publicly about the legislation while he tried to negotiate a bill.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who said he wanted to see a bipartisan deal to respond directly to the mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas, has backed Cornyn’s request.
In recent days, GOP senators have offered support for initiatives concerning mental health treatment and bolstering school security. However, they’ve generally avoided commenting publicly on proposals relating to limiting access to firearms, red flag laws and background checks, The Hill reported.
Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa., said Cornyn has asked him and others to keep their "powder dry" while negotiations continue.
"He doesn’t want somebody saying, I’m definitely for this or I’m definitely against that, because it screws up their whole negotiation," Grassley said, The Hill reported.
Other GOP senators appeared to be accommodating Cornyn.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said Thursday that she "wouldn't be prepared to weigh in" on proposals until there’s "an agreed-upon approach" on a proposal.
The Hill said Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, wouldn’t say if he opposed any of the suggested measures, added that he "will examine any proposals that are put forward."
Democrats and some Republicans have been focused on implementing tougher gun laws after recent mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, that resulted in a combined 31 deaths.
The House on Wednesday passed a wide-ranging gun-control bill that would raise the age limit to 21 for purchasing a semi-automatic rifle and prohibit the sale of ammunition magazines with a capacity of more than 15 rounds.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
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