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NV-Sen: Democratic frontrunner authors proposal to make domestic violence a military crime

Rep. Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.) authored a proposal to make domestic violence a crime under the Uniform Military Code of Justice. Rosen is also the frontrunner in Nevada's Democratic Senate primary. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

U.S. Rep. Jacky Rosen (Nev.), the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination to challenge GOP incumbent Sen. Dean Heller, has offered a proposal to make domestic violence a crime under military law, the Military Times reported.

The proposal would add more specificity to the way the military classifies assaults and should more effectively prevent domestic abusers from being able to purchase firearms.

"We are one step closer to getting rid of this dangerous loophole in the UCMJ that allows dangerous individuals convicted of domestic abuse to buy firearms, and I will work to ensure this commonsense measure continues to move forward and gets signed into law," Rosen said in a news release.

What is the background?

Classifying domestic violence assaults as such in the military became a mainstream issue in November after a former airman killed 26 people at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.

He shouldn't have been able to purchase a firearm after being convicted of assaulting his wife and child, but the military didn't properly notify the authorities of the nature of the crime.

The Uniform Military Code of Justice doesn't currently specify when an assault is a case of domestic violence.

Rosen's amendment passed through the House Armed Services Committee last week as part of the annual defense authorization bill, which will now work through the House and Senate.

What about the Nevada Senate race?

Rosen is the frontrunner in Nevada's Democratic Senate primary. Her main competition is Jesse Sbaih, a largely self-funded attorney from Las Vegas. The other candidates are Daniel Burleigh, David Drew Knight, Bobby Mahendra, and Allen Rheinhart.

Rosen has been endorsed by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and raised $1.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2017.

An April 30 to May 1 poll had Rosen leading Heller 44 percent to 42 percent. Heller's seat is considered one of the more significant chances for a Democratic pickup in the Senate.

The Democratic primary election is scheduled for June 12.

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