UPDATE: After 15 hours, the filibuster ended around 2 a.m. Thursday morning when Republican party leaders agreed to vote on two gun control measures. It's been nearly a decade since Congress made any significant changes to federal gun laws.
"We did not have that commitment when we started today," Senator Chris Murphy said as the filibuster came to a close.
At 11:20 a.m. on Wednesday morning, Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy launched a filibuster in support of increased gun restrictions on the Senate floor, and fellow Democrats are joining him.
The filibuster interrupted debate over a funding bill for the Justice Department and related agencies, which Murphy is reportedly advocating the Senate amend to include measures prohibiting those on terrorist watch lists from purchasing a firearm, as well as requiring universal background checks.
Murphy, who serves the state of Connecticut, has been an outspoken advocate of gun control since the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown. Now, in the aftermath of the deadliest mass shooting in American history, Murphy described himself and his colleagues as at a "breaking point." The Senate, he said, must listen to the overwhelming number of Americans that want an expansion of background checks, and come to a solution together.
"I'm going to remain on this floor until we get some signal, some sign that we can come together on these two measures, that we can get a path forward on addressing this epidemic in a meaningful, bipartisan way," Murphy said.
With more Senate Democrats participating in Murphy's filibuster, there could be representatives speaking on the Senate floor through Wednesday night, and there's hope that an agreement can be struck.
Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump tweeted that he was meeting with the National Rifle Association on Wednesday "about not allowing people on the terrorist watch list, or the no-fly list, to buy guns." The organization formally endorsed him earlier in his campaign. Ohio Senator Rob Portman also seems to have shifted his position, saying he supports a ban on gun sales to terror suspects.
Senator Elizabeth Warren stressed the importance of collectively taking immediate action when she joined Murphy in his filibuster.
"If we fail to act," she said, "the next time someone uses a gun to kill one of us, a gun that we could have kept out of the hands of a terrorist, the members of this Congress will have blood on our hands."