Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-Calif.), who sponsored the House measure incentivizing states to act, said similar legislation would “provide the foundation” for a Senate deal. “They are considering a few other things that are a little bit more challenging to get consensus on, but the red-flag bill is one that they seem to have more consensus,” he said.

But conservatives appear intent on undermining that consensus. Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) said Thursday that states are free to pursue red-flag laws if they wish, but “this should not be something Congress needs to meddle in.”

Daines, who is seeking to chair the Senate Republican campaign committee for the 2024 election cycle, added, “Many of our states are swimming in money right now after we shoveled $7 trillion of covid money out the door, so money is not the issue. The states can do this if they think it’s the best thing they should be doing.”

Other conservatives who voiced opposition included Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), who noted a red-flag law in New York did not prevent the May 14 mass shooting in a Buffalo supermarket that left 10 dead, as well as Sen. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), who called any red-flag provision a “poison pill” for any Senate deal. “I don’t see how a red-flag law passes up here,” he said. “I think it’s an infringement on the Second Amendment, and just like I’m standing up and fighting to protect our freedoms of speech and our freedoms of religion, I’m going to stand up and protect our Second Amendment.”