“Earlier today I met with families from Newtown, Conn., to discuss the legislation we are currently debating,” Grassley said on the Senate floor Tuesday. “It’s obviously very emotional and it isn’t an easy meeting to have, but it’s a very necessary meeting to have.

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“I would hope that my Republican colleagues meet with them. … When they hold up pictures of their loved ones, it makes it very personal,” Grassley said while holding photos of the victims.

Some family members of the Newtown victims flew to Washington, D.C., on Air Force One with President Obama in order to lobby senators to act on gun violence legislation this week.

Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidHopes rise for law to expand access to experimental drugs If Gorsuch pick leads to 'crisis,' Dems should look in mirror first Senate confirms Mulvaney to be Trump’s budget chief MORE (D-Nev.) is expected to file a cloture motion to proceed to debate on S.649, the Safe Communities, Safe Schools Act, on Tuesday night so that the Senate can vote to begin debate by Thursday.

GOP senators led by Sens. Mike LeeMike LeeCongress must reform civil asset forfeiture laws A guide to the committees: Senate Top antitrust senators call for Sessions to scrutinize AT&T-Time Warner merger MORE (R-Utah), Rand PaulRand PaulGOP healthcare plans push health savings account expansion Congress must reform civil asset forfeiture laws ­ObamaCare fix hinges on Medicaid clash in Senate MORE (R-Ky.) and Ted CruzTed CruzCPAC highlights include Trump, Pence Perez and Ellison agree on DNC playing neutral role in primary Big Pharma must address high drug prices MORE (R-Texas) have threatened to filibuster any gun-control reform legislation. They say the measures under discussion would limit Second Amendment rights.

The Senate gun reform bill would expand background checks on gun purchases, create new penalties on straw purchases and include new funding for school security. The bill doesn’t include an assault weapons ban or limits on magazine clip capacity — although Reid has promised to allow a vote on those provisions as amendments.

Republicans have expressed concern that extending background checks could create a federal registry of gun owners and make it harder for family members to transfer firearms.

Democrats, in turn, have pointed to a national poll that says 90 percent of people in the United States support stricter background checks in order to buy a gun.

But Grassley said voters might have a different view if they read the proposal that is circulating in the Senate.

“I do not think that 90 percent of Americans would support this universal background check if they had the chance to read the proposals,” Grassley said. “The whole process makes me wonder if the whole effort to pass something on the subject is really serious.”

Grassley has said he would offer his own gun violence bill as an alternative to the Democratic proposal.