The U.S. Senate rejected a bipartisan amendment today that would have expanded background checks on gun purchases, according to news reports.
The defeat marks a blow to advocates calling for more strict firearms laws after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook E.S. in Newtown, Conn., last year.
The measure was a product of intense negotiations between Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey and West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin.
It would have necessitated background check requirements on gun owners, and needed 60 votes to pass, which the two Senators thought it had.
It therefore failed, despite its 54-46 majority.